CHANGE and WildAid Vietnam Launched Short Film to Protect Pangolins and Our Future

In order to protect wildlife, CHANGE and WildAid Vietnam launch the short film "Guardians of the Wild" in June 2022, inspiring young people to take of Vietnam's diverse fauna.

This is the main media product of the Guardians of the Wild campaign – a creative media campaign that aims to raise public awareness of 4 Asian Pangolin species and their special abilities to help the ecosystem based on their real natural abilities: pest control. Thus, people will better understand the relationship between humans and pangolins – a species that is indispensable to the balance of the ecosystem.

Video by CHANGE and WildAid Vietnam

According to a report by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), in only 10 years, more than 1.000.000 pangolins have been illegally traded, which makes them the most trafficked mammals in the world. Aiming to end this situation, CHANGE and WildAid continue to launch creative campaigns that aim to raise public awareness and warn the community about human behaviors that are threatening the ecological balance. These behaviors include hunting and illegally trading pangolin products, which directly threatens the survival of this species in the wild.

The short film “Guardians of the Wild” revolves around the characteristics of 4 Asian pangolin species: the Sunda pangolin, the Philippine pangolin, the Chinese pangolin, and the Indian pangolin. The images of the 4 species are personified in the images of 4 superheroes, protecting the villagers from the invasion of millions of legions of ants and termites. The viewers will be led into unexpected situations, funny scenes, and profound moments. In the end, the viewers will experience a completely different ending from the usual superhero genres.

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Photo: Screenshot from "Guardians of the Wild" promotion video.

To widely spread the message about the 4 pangolin species, the Guardians of the Wild campaign is supported and represented by artists who are our goodwill ambassadors: Top 5 Miss Universe 2018 H’Hen Nie, Actor Duy Khanh, Dancer Quang Dang, and MC-Journalist Trac Thuy Mieu. In addition, the film is voiced over by Actor Ngoc Trai.

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Photo: WildAid

Besides the short film “Guardians of the Wild,” the campaign also launched the website which provides general information about the campaign and scientific knowledge about the pangolin species.

Moreover, young people who love the characters in the Guardians of the Wild can take a personality test to find out which character they correspond to. In addition to the microsite, CHANGE will carry out a series of communication activities on social media and LCD screens at shopping centers, buildings, and restaurants.

The Guardians of the Wild campaign is the latest activity of the Long-term Pangolin Rescue Project initiated by CHANGE and WildAid in 2016 to reduce the demand for pangolins and pangolin products in Vietnam. This is achieved through creative communication activities that aim to raise awareness and change consumption habits, the mobilization of support from doctors and business leaders, the cooperation with law enforcement agencies and local authorities, and the mobilization of all communities to join hands to save this species from extinction.

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Te Te (Pangolins) in the wild. Photo: Vietnamnet

Pangolins play an important ecological role, providing ‘pest’ control and improving soil quality. Their large and elongated claws enable them to burrow underground for shelter and to excavate ant and termite nests for food. In doing so, the soil is mixed and aerated—much like what happens when we rototill gardens or plow crop fields. This improves the nutrient quality of the soil and aids the decomposition cycle, providing a healthy substrate for lush vegetation to grow from.

A single pangolin can consume up to 191,780 insects – ants and termites/day (over 70 million a year). Researchers at Ohio State University claim billions of dollars are spent annually on repairing termite damage and treating and preventing infestations. Meanwhile, healthy populations of scaly anteaters throughout their historic range can help to alleviate these problems.

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