Hi guys! My name is Alejandro from Chicago! I recently just turned 18 years old, I start college very soon, and my first trip that I want to go alone is to South Africa! Ever since I was a little kid, I have been fascinated by the wildlife. It has always been a dream to visit the wildlife in person. A couples years ago, I found out the sad truth of what is happening in countries like South Africa. Things like poaching and the canned hunting industry has been growing signifcantly throughout the years and has taken an impact on the wildlife. For example, the number of lions around 1970 was an estimated 250,000 or more. Today, the numbers are estimated at barely 20,000. Rhinos and tigers are other animals who are at the few thousands and are at the point of extinction. After finding out about the decrease in population in the wildlife, I always wanted to help out but I thought I couldn't in any way since I was so far away. A year ago, I found out about how you can volunteer in sanctuaries in South Africa. I thought it was a great idea since it has been my dream to see the wildlife. It has been really hard to search a "good" sanctuary because there are many so-called sanctuaries who make false promises and only do it to get money off volunteers. After much research, I was able to find 2 sanctuaries that I am confident about volunteering at. The cost for these sanctuaries are pretty expensive since they provide food and a room for you. I tried raising as much money as I can, but I only have a part-time job since I am becoming a full-time student. Right now I would need help paying for one of the sanctuaries. I plan on making this trip during May of 2017. Any donation is great appreciated! If you would like to contact me with any questions and my experience (afterwards), my email is: firstname.lastname@example.org Once again, thank you!