The interview caught me slightly off - guard in the middle of a days work, but it's a wonderfully put together little movie.
You will hear me mention about the Bunong people and their closeness to animals, and then seemingly contradict myself saying we should be attempting a hands off approach to nature. When talking about the Bunong I specifically am talking about their relationship to captive elephants, whereas given more time I would have liked to talk about the complexities of developing a situation in which you can create a 'human free' environment alongside indigenous communities, and that it is very much my 'ideal world' strategy. Although I do believe achievable in some cases.
Again given more time I would love to have delved into the complexities of Elephants and livelihoods, particularly focusing on indigenous communities. Today, in Cambodia the captive Elephant population is ageing. With the illegality of capture from the wild, village and privately owned Elephants will fade away, unless any laws change in the near future. The Bunong have built a culture for thousands of years alongside the Elephant, and honour them as the strongest spirit in the forest realms. The individuals that come to EVP show that times and minds are changing, signing their animals over to a different model to one they are used to, and in the process finding there is a new way to live with Elephants, and still profit, without using them as workhorses...
Please visit the EVP site (below) if you would like to contribute to the program by sponsoring an Elephant or making a donation, or just to find out a little more about what is going on out here!
Link to film-makers instagram; www.instagram.com/nouvellesdeshorizons
Link to the Elephant Valley Project; http://www.elephantvalleyproject.org/