By now, we are all tragically familiar with the scale and brutality of South Africa's rhino-poaching crisis. But not many people beyond the country's borders are aware of the plight of its tiniest victims.

Mostly too small to matter to the poachers, dozens of young rhino calves are being left behind as their mothers are killed for their horns. The widespread slaughter is creating an influx of orphans who are too helpless to survive on their own – and closely guarded facilities have been springing up across the country to deal with the problem.

Caring for these young, traumatised survivors is a massive job. A job that can take three long years for just a single calf.

In this latest episode of Earth Touch Insider, we go behind the scenes at the Fundimvelo Thula Thula Rhino Orphanage to meet one little orphan who's getting a second chance at life thanks to round-the-clock care and surveillance, as well as a whole lot of dedication from a team of experts and volunteers.

Rescuing, rehabilitating and finally releasing these orphans back into the wild is critical. After all, it is they who will carry their species into the next generation.

If you'd like to help Thula Thula continue its amazing work, hit the donate button on their Facebook page. 


Top header image: Valentina Storti, Flickr