Wildlife SOS was established in 1995 by a small group of individuals inspired to start a movement and make lasting change to protect and conserve India’s natural heritage, forest and wildlife wealth. Today, the organization has evolved to actively work towards protecting Indian wildlife, conserving habitat, studying biodiversity, conducting research and creating alternative and sustainable livelihoods for erstwhile poacher communities or those communities that depend on wildlife for sustenance.
India’s wildlife is under severe threat – every animal from the majestic elephant and the tiger, to the shy sloth bear and rare pangolins have fast become “the hunted”. While time is running out for these creatures, it’s not too late to help. Wildlife SOS consistently makes a difference to give back to the planet, to give back to nature and help protect the environment and wildlife.
Kartick Satyanarayan and Geeta Seshamani with their shared enthusiasm, dedicated themselves to the mission of eradicating the abusive practice of ‘dancing’ bears in India completely.The initial days were very difficult due to lack of support and funding. Geeta’s foresight in creating Wildlife SOS as an arm of her existing rescue operation, Friendicoes, allowed the two organizations to share knowledge and resources as the team learned and made its way through the initial challenges of addressing the needs of urban wildlife suffering from habitat encroachment a result of the surging population growth in India.
Today it is an organization responsible for taking action against animal cruelty, rescuing wildlife in distress, working to resolve man-animal conflicts while promoting and educating the public about the need for habitat protection. Wildlife SOS is committed to working with communities who depend on wildlife for sustenance and providing them alternative and sustainable livelihoods as that is the key to sustainable conservation. Wildlife SOS also emphasizes the value of ex-situ research in veterinary areas, behavioral studies, reproductive physiology and other fields in collaboration with national and international universities and organizations.
Although Wildlife SOS is mainly known for its work with the “Dancing Bears” of India, we also have active projects to help Leopards, Elephants, Reptiles and other animals. We work on various projects targeted at environment and biodiversity conservation as well as reducing our carbon footprint. With the help of our dedicated staff and volunteers, grant programs and supportive agencies, both national and international, everyday they renew their commitment to the animals and to finding innovative ways to sustain and grow their mission. Wildlife SOS has formal ‘co-operative’ agreements in place with state governments and forest departments in more than nine states in India.