Timeline of the Help Foundation Beginnings
2007 – It all began.
In 2007, Dr Andrew McLean was demonstrating the use of evidence-based horse training techniques in Tammisaari, Finland. Prior to this, a Finnish science journalist, Helena Telkanranta, had been working on a World Wildlife Fund (WWF) project in Nepal and returned home to Finland determined to improve and modernise the foundation training of working elephants there. Helena attended Andrew’s clinic in Tammisaari and invited him to contribute to her newly established training project in Chitwan Nepal in 2007 with a view to adapting his horse-friendly methods to help working elephants and their handlers. In order to gain insights into the general behaviour of the Asian elephant (and to feel comfortable with these giants), Laurie Pond who was training elephants at
2008 – The H-ELP Method Is Proven
In 2008, the Nepalese government was shown videos of the program’s success in Chitwan and asked for a
2010 – The H-ELP Foundation is born.
Thus in 2010 the HELP foundation was born.
2014 – Our first manual is published
In 2014 Andrew wrote an elephant training manual to give young elephants a start based on a variant of the neuroscience of animal cognition and learning that he distilled from his PhD studies at the University of Melbourne. This first practical use of these principles with elephants was in 2007 in Nepal and today the training program remains much the same. HELP published the manual which has since been translated into Malayalam, Assamese, Hindi, Thai and Burmese and is variously entitled Elephant-Friendly Training for Working Elephants, Hasthisiksha and How to Train Elephants. Those interested in training will find this interesting to read and it is available on kindle: HELP’s workshops are conducted in India, Thailand and Myanmar and we have unanimously received positive feedback. We are now the official training partners for the Wildlife Trust of India, the National Elephant Institute of Thailand and the Myanmar Timber Enterprises (the largest owners of elephants the world).
2016 – The H-ELP Foundation Expands
We expanded into Thailand and Myanmar.
2017 – We are ACNC Certified and attain DGR status
WA huge milestone for help, we are registered for the ACNC, and subsequently certified by the Australian Tax Office with Deductible Gift Recipient Status (1).
2018 – Our head trainer Dr. Andrew McLean is accepted as a member of the AsESG
A peak body for Asian elephant conservation, the invitation and acceptance of Dr. McLean was a huge milestone for the Foundation as a whole.
2018 – We commence work in Laos
In January of 2018, we
Into the future:
HELP’s commitment is to not only improve the lives of working elephants but to also significantly contribute to the safety and lives of mahouts across the world. We believe that knowledge provides confidence and security and that these outcomes provide