Earth Day Every Day: Protecting Our Planet’s Unsung Heroes

By Joe Aura,



As we celebrate Earth Day (April 22nd), it is essential to remember that our commitment to environmental conservation extends far beyond a single day of the year. Earth Day is every day, and it serves as a reminder that all living beings, including animals, deserve our protection and care. Among these unsung heroes is the donkey, whose history in Kenya is deeply intertwined with the fabric of communities across the nation.

For centuries, the donkey has been a reliable companion, aiding in transportation, agriculture, and daily tasks that sustain livelihoods in Kenya (source: Brooke East Africa). Its contributions to these communities are immeasurable, yet often overlooked. From the bustling streets of Nairobi to the remote villages of Turkana, the donkey is a symbol of resilience and cooperation, bridging gaps between people and facilitating essential activities of daily life.

However, the very existence of these noble creatures is under threat due to illegal slaughtering driven by international demand for their skins. This illicit trade not only endangers the survival of donkey populations but also fuels other crimes and health issues within communities (source: KARLO Annual Report, 2019). The high demand for donkey skins in countries like China, where they are used in traditional medicine, exacerbates the problem, pushing these animals to the brink of extinction.

Recognizing the urgency of the situation, the Kenyan government has taken decisive action to prevent the mistreatment and extinction of donkeys. Measures such as the immediate formation of multi-agency teams across counties, tasked with enforcing operations against illegal slaughterhouses, demonstrate a commitment to safeguarding these invaluable creatures (source: Government of Kenya, Ministry of Agriculture). Furthermore, public awareness campaigns, media outreach, and stringent regulations on meat slaughter, transport, and sale aim to curb illicit activities and promote the ethical treatment of animals.

As stakeholders and earth lovers, we have a responsibility to treat animals with compassion and respect, not just on Earth Day, but every day. By advocating for animal welfare, supporting government initiatives, and making conscious choices in our daily lives, we can honor the spirit of Earth Day and ensure a sustainable future for all living beings on our planet. Let us pledge to protect and cherish the unsung heroes like the donkey, for they are integral to the delicate balance of life on Earth.


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