Occupying a plot within Nairobi National Park, this non-profit trust was established in 1977, shortly after the death of David Sheldrick, who served as the anti-poaching warden of Tsavo National Park. Together with his wife, Daphne, David pioneered techniques for raising orphaned black rhinos and elephants and reintroducing them into the wild, and the trust retains close links with Tsavo for these and other projects. The centre is one of Nairobi’s most popular attractions.
While the elephants gambol, the keepers talk about the individual orphans and their stories. Explanations are also given about the broader picture of the orphans project and some of the other projects in which the trust is involved. There’s also the opportunity to ‘adopt’ one of the elephants. For those who do, there’s a chance to visit when your elephant returns to the stockades around 5pm every evening – advance bookings essential.
The trust is also home to a number of orphaned rhinos, many of which, like the baby elephants, mingle with wild herds in Nairobi National Park during the day. One exception is Maxwell, a blind rhino who lives in a large stockade for his protection.