Who we are

Elephants, Rhinos & People (ERP) was founded to preserve and protect Southern Africa’s wild elephants and rhinos through a strategy that is based on rural poverty alleviation. In order to accomplish its mission, ERP carefully selects projects based on their potential to create economic engines for impoverished rural communities in areas adjacent to threatened elephant and rhino populations. Armed with an Ashoka-accredited poverty alleviation model, and by having a multifaceted team positioned to tackle poverty, ERP is able to address the welfare of elephants and rhinos in an unusual but effective manner. ERP brings over 20 years of experience in community relations, poverty alleviation, and impact investment in infrastructure, so as to achieve sustainable, non-lethal wildlife conservation.

Given that the poverty alleviation-based strategy is a medium to long-term proposition, ERP also implements a range of tactical interventions designed to combat the poaching problem, and to improve the welfare of elephants and rhinos in the short term. These interventions include but are not limited to, elephant relocations, a veterinary emergency response unit and drought relief programs.

How ERP Operates

100% of your donation goes directly to ERP's fieldwork

ERP's parent company, groupelephant.com, donates 1% of its revenues to cover all of ERP's operational expenses, and to fund projects. This means that 100% of every dollar you donate will go straight into our fieldwork projects.

Within reason ERP will try anything that may work

We have an appetite for well-managed risk, so we pursue a broad range of potential solutions and rapidly scale the ones the work.

ERP works directly with the community

ERP empowers communities that live side by side with wild elephants and rhinos because we believe community members are the only viable long-term solution to the survival of elephants and rhinos

ERP builds unconventional partnerships

We have no preconceived notions about which players should be involved in this fight, so we seek out partners who are best positioned to help, whether they are businesses, other conservation organizations, governments, or local communities.

ERP is run with the discipline of a business, not like a conventional nonprofit

Drawing on the resources in groupelephant.com, we have expertise in building partnerships, executing projects and growing economic wealth, and we apply these skills to the challenge of poverty in rural communities, with reference to elephant and rhino conservation.

ERP proves every project

By measuring basic impact numbers, providing project details and photos, ERP strives to prove every field project it completes.

The ERP Mercantile model

100% of the trading surplus generated by ERP Mercantile is channeled into projects carried out by our sister nonprofits, in pursuit of the objectives of the ERP program. Our online ‘shop-in-shop’ marketplace sells our branded merchandise and also a carefully curated selection of fine merchandise, manufactured in the USA and Africa.

By buying through ERP Mercantile, you are effectively supporting jobs in the USA and Africa, and also fighting for the welfare of elephants and rhinos, and the alleviation of poverty in Africa. For ideas on how to improve ERP Mercantile or to offer us your support, please contact info@erpmercantile.com.