The Orphans sculpture

Come and visit the elephants of tomorrow

The Orphans is a sculpture exhibit featuring 21 life-size bronze elephants, a mother and 20 orphaned elephants, each orphan symbolises a real elephant currently in the care of the SWT, displayed in the centre of Marble Arch, London from 4th December 2019, for one year. Created, and funded, by internationally acclaimed artists Gillie and Marc, the sculpture aims to raise funds and awareness for this next generation of elephants who will grow up into the healthy and supported elephants of tomorrow thanks to the SWT.

The Orphans come to Marble Arch

Bringing elephant conservation to the heart of London and into the minds of the millions able to visit The Orphans sculpture - together we can secure a future for the elephants of tomorrow.

4 December 2019 – 4 December 2020

Marble Arch Lawn. Entry is free.

From Kenya to the heart of London, our sculpture ‘herd’ arrived in London on 4th December, where they will reside for the next 12 months. You can come and meet the 21 life-size bronze elephants and get to know the real-life orphans that have inspired the twenty orphans, who stand around a central mother figure. Each sculpture includes the name of the orphan they symbolise and an interactive information board, enabling you to read the unique rescue story of each elephant and directly support their rehabilitation journey. To help create awareness of our work in the rescue and rehabilitation of orphaned elephants, so that we can save more lives, we encourage you to take photos when you visit and to share these on your social media accounts using the hashtag #ElephantsOfTomorrow

The Artists - Gillie and Marc

The exceptional Gillie and Marc create some of the world’s most innovative public art, spreading messages of love, equality, and conservation around the world. Their highly coveted sculptures and paintings can be seen in art galleries and public sites in over 250 cities.

They hope that The Orphans will bring the plight faced by elephants today to the forefront of people’s minds and hearts as they ask us to consider how our actions will affect their survival.

The elephants of tomorrow

This is a sculpture that represents more than orphaned calves. This is a yearlong celebration of hope and strength for the generation who will grow up into the healthy and supported elephants of tomorrow thanks to the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. The future of their species in the wild relies on this young generation being strong. Strength we can all help to provide. Because by December next year, when this sculpture leaves London, they’ll have only 19 years left to defy the odds with another generation to follow. This is a sculpture for positive change. One we won’t let become a memorial.

Maisha

A victim of the climate crisis, Maisha was found collapsed near a water hole during a prolonged drought. It is likely she became separated from her herd after she became too weak to keep up with the search for food and water.

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Enkesha

Enkesha nearly lost her trunk in a poacher’s snare. Emergency veterinary treatment saved her trunk and her life and she’s now being cared for at the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s Nairobi Nursery.

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Jotto

Swahili for heat, Jotto was found stuck in a well during the hottest month of the year. He would have surely died had he not been found by local herdsmen and brought to the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

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The elephants of tomorrow

The future of their species in the wild relies on this young generation being strong. Strength we can all help to provide.

Maisha

A victim of the climate crisis, Maisha was found collapsed near a water hole during a prolonged drought. It is likely she became separated from her herd after she became too weak to keep up with the search for food and water.

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Enkesha

Enkesha nearly lost her trunk in a poacher’s snare. Emergency veterinary treatment saved her trunk and her life and she’s now being cared for at the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s Nairobi Nursery.

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Jotto

Swahili for heat, Jotto was found stuck in a well during the hottest month of the year. He would have surely died had he not been found by local herdsmen and brought to the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

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Luggard

Barely able to walk after he was shot in the legs, vets determined the only way to save his life was a rescue and immediate, intensive care at the SWT Nairobi Nursery.

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Maktao

Maktao is a suspected orphan of human-wildlife conflict. He was starving and terribly dehydrated when he arrived at the Nursery, hungry for milk and fluids. He’s very rambunctious and will one day return to the wild when he is ready.

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Emoli (left)

A victim of the worsening climate crisis, Emoli was found alone, weak and starving along the Voi River. It is likely his mother died after becoming too weak to find food during a prolonged drought at the time.

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Musiara

Named after the Musiara swamp where he was found close to death, Musiara was so weak he collapsed several times at our Nursery and it was many days before his strength began to return.

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Ngilai

Ngilai had a tough start to life when he was found at the bottom of a well. He needed an immediate lifesaving drip and treatment for exhaustion, while Keepers tended to his cuts and scrapes.

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Ndotto

Ndotto was rescued by helicopter from the Ndoto Mountains when he was found following a herd of livestock. At the time of rescue, his umbilical cord was still fresh meaning he was only a new born.

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Mbegu

An orphan of human wildlife conflict, Mbegu was severely injured after she was attacked by humans. Thriving in the Trust’s care, she is a deeply maternal and loves to mollycoddle the younger orphans.

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Barsilinga

Vets were unable to save Barsilinga’s mother who was fatally injured by poachers. They brought her week old baby into the safe-keeping of the Trust, where he has grown up.

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Mukkoka

Rangers followed 11 month old Mukkoka’s lone footsteps for days, luckily locating this solitary elephant before he became a meal for predators. His reason for being orphaned is a mystery.

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Tamiyoi

Arriving at the Trust after she was found trapped in a well, this little calf suffered from terrible ill health for months but thanks to intensive care she pulled through.

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Mwashoti

An innocent victim of poaching, Mwashoti was maimed by a snare which all but severed his leg. He made a miraculous recovery and is now living at our Umani Springs Reintegration Unit.

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Tagwa (right)

Rescued from the slopes of Mount Kenya, like other elephants from the area, this calf was covered in a protective blanket of dark fuzzy hair all over her body. She is a suspected orphan of human-wildlife conflict.

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Kiombo

Kiombo’s sunken cheeks were a clear sign to rescuers this baby elephant had been without his mother for some time. He settled into the Nursery seamlessly, as if understanding he had found a new family.

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Kiasa

Without her mother’s milk, this little six month orphaned elephant would have surely died. Rescuers flew her directly to the Trust’s Nursery in a helicopter where a warm stable and a bottle of milk awaited her.

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Ambo

An orphan from the Amboseli area, rescuers were unable to reunite this lone three month elephant with his herd. He joined the Trust’s orphan herd and is now living at one of the SWT’s reintegration Units

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Malkia

Malkia’s mother was a well-known elephant who succumbed to the effects of old age, exacerbated by drought. In rescuing her milk dependent calf, Malkia was given a second chance at life.

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Sattao

Sattao is an orphan who was found alone in 2017, covered in bite marks from a predator attack and dreadfully thin. He was only three months at the time. He is now safe at the Nairobi Nursery and made a full recovery.

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A species under threat

Poaching and human-wildlife conflict claims the loves of up to 55 elephants a day. Symbolising peace and calm, the artists choose the colour blue to draw attention to our elephant mother’s tusks and our collective hope for the future of elephants and an end to elephant poaching.

Sculpture shop

Purchase your very own limited edition Elephants of Tomorrow resin sculpture and help support the work of the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. Available in bronze and resin.

Caring for Kenya's orphans

We are currently caring for 100 orphaned elephants, each with their own unique personality and story of rescue. All need specialist care and love to thrive, so they can enjoy a life in the wild when grown.

Support the #ElephantsOfTomorrow

Your donation will ensure the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust can be there for elephants. Protecting those living wild and providing the rescue and rehabilitation for the babies left orphaned, so that they can return to a life in the wild when grown.

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