Nissan has donated a NP300 pick-up to the Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre as part of an ongoing initiative to help ensure the fastest animal on land is still around for many generations to come.
The Cheetah Centre has played an important role in the preservation and protection of cheetahs and wild dogs over the past 46 years. It currently looks after 115 cheetahs and relies on sponsorships, tours and adoption programmes to subsidise its conservation projects.
By donating a new NP300, Nissan will help the centre to run its daily operations more smoothly and allow for its team of animal ambassadors headed by ‘Yeats’ the cheetah, to travel for school visits in a reliable, secure and durable vehicle.
Due to circumstances at birth, Yeats had to be hand-raised to ensure his survival. He has been visiting schools since 2011, helping to spread the message of conservation and creating an understanding of the need to protect cheetahs and other vulnerable cats.
Like the cheetah, the Nissan NP300 also has a rich legacy in South Africa. Over the years it has developed a formidable reputation as a rugged, reliable African pickup, making it the ideal choice for transporting the animals to various locations. Built with extra-strength tailgate chains, a double-skinned load box and tailgate, pull-up type tailgate opener and sturdy cargo hooks, the vehicle has become a workhorse of choice across the continent.
A special enclosure has also been attached to the donation vehicle by Nissan for the specific purpose of keeping Yeats secure while traveling.
Nissan will also contribute to five local school visits a year. These visits will enable the Ann Van Dyk Cheetah Centre to go into communities to educate the public about its work and create the opportunity for children to learn from ambassadors like Yeats.
Finally, Nissan will assist with branding upgrades to various areas of the centre.
“Although the Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre is world renowned for its conservation efforts, partnering with Nissan will increase our visibility and ensure the longevity of our education and conservation programmes,” says Education Officer at the Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre, Rita Groenewald.
Caring for the environment has always been a priority for Nissan. Just last year the auto manufacturer partnered with the Pilanesberg National Parks Rhino Protection Initiative, donating a Patrol 4×4 to the Initiative to assist it in reaching those areas of the National Park which are more difficult to access, and in so doing help to protect its rhinos.
“We appreciate the importance of projects like the Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre,” says Xavier Gobille, MD of Marketing and Sales at Nissan Africa. “We hope that through our support, the centre will be able to continue its outstanding work in protecting the legacy of these incredible animals.”
Nissan first became involved with the Ann Van Dyk Cheetah Centre last year when it obtained naming rights to the “Nissan Charity Cheetah Karting Day”, which raised the most money since the event’s inception. Based on the success of this event Nissan decided to start building a more fruitful and lasting relationship with the Centre.
“We are proud to be aligned with Nissan as it shares our passion for environmental education. Nissan’s support will enable the centre to grow and we look forward to a long, successful road together,” comments Groenewald.
Some images taken from our last visit to the center. I think it’s time for us to go back there again…