Nat Geo WILD, in partnership with the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival and the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), announced today the Rally the Herd public service announcement (PSA) contest, to raise awareness of the plight of the African elephant.
The contest will give aspiring wildlife filmmakers, conservationists, students or anyone with a passion for protecting our largest land animals the opportunity to create a public service announcement that rallies others to action. The winning PSA will air on Nat Geo WILD.
Participants are asked to submit a PSA focused on the African elephant, with the goal of inspiring others to learn more about the decline of the population and to offer their help. PSAs should be no longer than 90 seconds and can be created with original footage, and/or footage and photography provided by Nat Geo WILD. Entries will be accepted through Sept. 7 at each of the partners’ Facebook pages or by visiting bitly.com/RallyTheHerd, and will be judged on the following criteria:
Connection to theme of the African elephant (30%)
Quality of storyline and script (20%)
Creativity and/or content originality (20%)
Production quality (e.g., lighting, shot composition, focus, sound) (15%)
The top three finalists will be announced by Sept. 14, 2015, and invited to the Jackson Hole Elephant Conservation Summit, Sept. 27-29, where for three days leading elephant scientists, conservationists and advocates will convene with 650+ international media professionals to share resources and strategies, and brainstorm innovative approaches to halt the killing of elephants and illegal trafficking of ivory. The winning PSA will air on Nat Geo WILD later this year.
“Getting people to care about these elephants is the first step in motivating them to act,” said Geoff Daniels, executive vice president and general manager of Nat Geo WILD. “We look forward to seeing how these filmmakers use the camera lens to ignite that passion in viewers to want to learn and do more.”
Poachers kill as many as 35,000 elephants each year in Africa, and other threats such as habitat loss and conflict with humans are jeopardizing the future of one of the continent’s most iconic species. Nat Geo WILD takes its viewers to the front lines of this crisis, where conservation groups like AWF are battling to save the species from extinction.
“Documentaries, films, National Geographic articles and programs have all helped to inspire a sense of awe and appreciation for the African elephant,” said Dr. Patrick Bergin, CEO of AWF. “Now we need the camera lens to inspire advocates for their survival.”
Lisa Samford, executive director of the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival and Conservation Summit, added, “We aim to engage the power of media to influence global change to spark a cultural shift and empower a public front that doesn’t tolerate the use of ivory products and illegal poaching of the world’s elephants.”