July 21, 2016

Time’s running out for Tigers. So let’s Run to Save Them

Time’s running out for Tigers. So let’s Run to Save Them

Malaysia's tigers need all the help they can get. Photo Credit: 7-themes.com

Some of us like to run. Some of us like to run even more if it’s for a good cause. And what better cause for running than the cause of saving Malaysia’s wild tigers?

Come August 14, you can do just that by joining the Wild Tiger Charity Run 2016 in Kuala Lumpur. The event, which kicks off at Perdana Botanical Gardens, is organized by the Malaysian Conservation Alliance for Tigers (MyCat), the Rotary Club of Kuala Lumpur DiRaja, TRAFFIC and WWF-Malaysia. It will raise funds for tiger conservation projects as well as awareness of the plight of tigers in the wild.

wild-tiger-run-2016-poster_largeIn addition to the 10km distance, the event will feature a 1km VIP run. And for extra fun and effect you can come dressed as a tiger in homage to Malaysia’s emblematic apex predator. If you can’t make it to the run, despair not: You can also run virtually by registering online.

Time is running out for the country’s last remaining tigers in the wild with only a mere 300 or so of them left. Yet, conservationists say, many Malaysians do not seem to care – or at least not enough to do something about it. But it’s never too late until it’s too late. That is why events like Wild Tiger Run can serve an important purpose: educating the public about the urgency of comprehensive and effective conservation measures.

“Tigers are an umbrella species. They need large, intact forests for survival and so when we save wild tiger species, we are actually saving a whole lot more,” Wong Pui May, a coordinator for MyCat, told The Star Online. “We also want to place a focus on our own wildlife. I’ve met children who know more about pumas than tigers and toucans than hornbills! We too often forget about the wonders that we have right here in our own backyard.”

Yes, we do. We also forget that even little bits of help can add up and go a long way. The fee for joining the run is RM50, or a mere RM30 for students. Yet just “RM3,000 would enable the purchase and maintenance of an infra-red camera trap for one year, which will help us to monitor wildlife at our project site in the Sungai Yu Tiger Corridor,” Wong said. And every RM10,000 raised could support a week-long outreach program by MyCat in a rural area to educate locals about the need for saving forests and their wild residents.

So get those running shoes ready. We’ll see you there!

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