VFAES could not function without the support of our dedicated, talented and generous volunteers. We are eternally grateful for their precious time and commitment to helping Asian elephants of India.  All of our volunteers come from diverse walks of life, but what glues our team together is their passion to protect endangered Asian elephants, and leave a better planet for our future generations.

Samantha_Smith.jpg

SAMANTHA SMITH

 Samantha Smith, a business executive, is VFAES's ambassador in the United Kingdom and has been creating awareness about the plight of elephants on behalf of VFAES for the past two years. She says, "I feel that everyone can do something to help these majestic souls - by supporting, donating or arranging an event for this amazing cause. I choose VFAES - as I believe in Sangita Iyer - her commitment, dedication, non-stop energy and emotional bond to do whatever she can to protect these innocent, clever, beautiful creatures.   I will always support VFAES as much as I physically can."

JenniferHebden.jpg

JENNIFER HEBDEN

Jennifer is a graphic designer with experience in marketing, social media, and email campaigns. When she's not spending time with her bulldog Gus, she's usually working or volunteering for various non-profits. She decided to volunteer for VFAES because of her love of animals and Sangita's clear vision of what changes need to be made to help the Asian Elephants in India

Rosemary_Conder.jpg

ROSEMARY CONDER

With more than 25 years of experience, Rosemary has held leadership positions in charities based in Toronto, Vancouver and New York City.  Rosemary’s passion since childhood has been animals.  She created her first anti-seal hunt petition at the age of 10 and at the age of 39 became the Chief Development Officer for the largest animal welfare organization of its kind in Canada. In 2010, she began a series of trips to Asia to help and research elephants exploited by the tourism industry. She has had deep love, respect and admiration for elephants ever since her first trip. She has given numerous public talks on elephant exploitation and tourism to help create awareness in the west.

Rupa Ganiga.jpg

RUPA GANIGA

Rupa is a globetrotter, bitten by eternal wanderlust. When people ask where she is from she loves to say with a smile "I am from Earth, how about you?" Almost every time this is rewarded with instant bonding and exuberant laughter of oneness. She is an animal lover and a vegan who envisions a world where zoos have been replaced with interconnected forests where animals roam free.

 

She decided not to have a child as the world is overpopulated with much suffering because of it. An IT Professional and later an HR head, she loves to paint and is a Yoga teacher and believes in living in the moment. Seattle is her home base with roots in Mumbai India.  

 

Introduced to ‘Gods in Shackles’ and Sangita Iyer by a common friend, she found deep empathy for the cause and what Sangita was striving to make the world better for our elephants.

lauren-pond.jpg

LAUREN POND

Lauren has 12 years of experience working for an internet marketing company, which focused on content marketing, building websites and Search Engine Optimization. She lives in Chicago, Illinois with her husband, daughter, son, two Great Pyrenees, and a cat. Over the years, she has volunteered for many types of organizations. Lauren decided to volunteer for VFAES after listening to Sangita speak for Hay House and was inspired by her determination and resilience.