In the afternoon of the 30th, June, 2014, Rhino Art Vietnam contest has been announced in Hanoi. The event launched at Le Duan school- a very special school for all outstanding student leaders from many secondary schools in Hanoi to gather for leadership training skills. Rhino Art Vietnam is the art contest targeting toward the thirteen to seventeen years old students, aim to collect the largest number of paintings and student messages against the illegal poaching of rhinos, a huge animal on the verge of extinction. In the launching ceremony, Mrs Teresa Telecky- the Director of Wildlife for Humane Society International presented the current alarming situation of rhinos poaching for horns in Africa. If the poaching level does not decrease, within 6 years, the rhinos will be extinct. In addition, she said that most of rhino horns are smuggled from South Africa to Asian countries, especially China and Vietnam because people in these countries believe that rhino horns are magic medicines for any incurable diseases.
The year 2014 is the first year this contest held in Vietnam by the nonprofit organization WildAct cooperated with Kingsley Holgate Foundation, Human Society International and Department of education and training in Hanoi. More than 20 secondary and high schools in Vietnam has been involved in our campaign, some of those are: Marie Curie secondary school, Quang Trung school, Tran Phu high school and so on (List of schools and study centers involved in Rhino Art can be found here). The purpose of campaign was to provide students with sounds scientific knowledge about the rhino horns and the important roles of rhinos in the ecosystem.
The contest was brought to disadvantaged students in Hoa Binh village to give them the happiness of drawing pictures in Children’s day.
The contest was also spread out in many art centers in Hanoi such as Co Xinh center, Studio Art Pink, Vitamin Art and had many students and their parents advocate strongly.
Mrs Kim- the manager at Co Xinh center stated: “Rhino Art Vietnam is a great contest that provides chances for children not only to learn more about the wild animals but also to show their talents and creativity to create many meaningful art works in this summer holiday”.
In total, 3000 special editions of “I love animals” magazines have been distributed to students with templates and meaningful gifts. The online copies of magazines and templates can be downloaded from our website.
This is the first time Vietnamese students have had opportunity to know more about rhinos, the number of rhinos left in the wild, their behaviors and their roles in nature and to human. They realised that the compositions of rhino horns are the same as finger nails and hair or hooves; therefore, horn cannot be a type of medicine. From then, they can share this useful information with their family and friends to raise awareness, call for people to join hand to protect rhinos from poaching as well as reduce the consumption and illegal trade of rhino horns in Vietnam as much as possible.
One of the paintings of a student taking part in to the contest with the strong message: “No more rhino, no more xavan. Let’s save the rhino to protect the environment!”. Other impressive drawings are sent to the contest from all over Vietnam.
Rhino Art Vietnam also received support from singer Thu Minh – one of the artists contributing actively to the promotion campaign for rhino protection.
Until now, there are more than 1000 paintings sent to participate in the contest. All the drawings were collected at each school or posted to our address: WildAct organization, 26, TT26, Khu đô thị Văn Phú, Hà Đông, Hà Nội.
The deadline for submission is the 20th of July, 2014 according to postage stamp. The awarding ceremony announcing 6 student winners are going to be held in the 5th of August, 2014. These 6 students - the rhino ambassadors of Vietnam are sent to South Africa to attend International Youth Rhino Summit (http://www.youthrhinosummit.com) , visit the Sarafi national park and take part in other activities with students from 21 countries within 1 week from 20th, July to 27th, July, 2014. In addition, 50 small prizes (stuffed rhinos and crayons) will also be given to other excellent pictures.