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When an Elephant Smiles

Saving orphaned baby elephants amid massive scale ivory poaching in Africa

Roxy Danckwerts has cared for sick and orphaned animals for more than 20 years. Cheetahs, lions, warthogs and birds, they all find refuge at her 'Wild is Life' sanctuary in the heart of Zimbabwe. But the mighty and long-lived elephant babies, widely poached for their ivory, need a bit more care and attention than most. That’s why Roxy set up a nursery for orphaned baby elephants to help them recover from the trauma and grow into healthy adults.

Orphaned baby elephants, living victims of brutal elephant poaching in Zimbabwe
Thousands of elephants are killed every year in Africa for their ivory. Poachers don't just decimate the elephant population; they also leave orphaned calves to die alone.

An RTD crew heads for Zimbabwe to visit the nursery and hear the moving story of Roxy’s project. She and her family reveal what it’s like to care for elephants and the special bond that grows between them.