When I was kid, I loved animals, so much that I managed to bug my parents into getting me that “Illustrated Wildlife Treasury” set that they used to advertise on TV. The set basically had a bunch of different cards with pictures of animals and facts about them. One of my favorite groups of animals in the set were the lemurs.
Lemurs are a type of primate that lives only on the African island of Madagascar. They are more primitive than monkey and apes, and their faces are often more cat-like, with enormous eyes that help them see in the dark. Madagascar is the world’s 4th largest island, and its relative isolation has made it a hotbed of biodiversity: approximately 5% of the world’s plant and animals species are found here.
However, Madagascar’s unique environment is under threat: an entire third of the island’s native vegetation has disappeared since the 1970’s, and that’s bad news for those adorable bug-eyed lemurs. In fact, most lemur species are now endangered.
However, you can get a passport and help protect both Madagascar’s rich environment and its people, two thirds of whom live below the international poverty line. UK-based charity Azafady offers a program called “Lemur Venture,” which Lemur Venture gives volunteers the chance to “work on an extensive range of projects from the collection of data on endangered lemur species to environmental education with local communities and tree-planting for reforestation purposes.”
To participate, you need to be willing to work and in good physical shape. You’ll also need to do some fundraising: the US equivalent of £1,600 for 4 weeks or £2,200 for 8 weeks.
And, of course, you’ll also need to get a passport if you don’t already have one, or renew your passport if yours has expired. Remember to allow enough time for your passport to arrive-it generally takes 6 weeks for regular service and 3 weeks for the government’s expedited service.
If you need a passport more quickly, the most convenient way is to use a private passport expediting company like RushMyPassport.com. An expediting company will personally deliver your application to the Department of State, reducing the amount of time it takes to get a passport to as little as 24 hours!