Meet Dr. Gladys Kalema Zikusoka, Uganda’s first veterinary doctor for the wild. Dr. Kalema is an outstanding personality and has risen to achieve world recognition though her works in wildlife conservation. At an early age of 12, Dr. Gladys Kalema Zikusoka had passion for animals that drove her to start a wildlife club and went ahead to organize trips to Queen Elizabeth National Park.
Her passion won her a scholarship to the University of London Royal Veterinary College where she trained. Dr. Gladys Kalema Zikusoka is also an Alta Malta of the North Carolina State University. One can relate to Dr. Zikusoka as Africa’s Dian Fossey due to her efforts in gorilla conservation. The latter named is a world renown American zoologist and primatologist that spent over 18 years doing extensive study of gorillas in Africa. In that legacy, we now see Dr. Gladys Kalema Zikusoka trying to carry one that legacy and creating her own legacy as a conservationist working to save the critically endangered mountain gorillas. It’s a cause well chosen as growing up in Uganda the pearl of Africa, mountain gorilla are a fundamental part of the country’s heritage and tourism industry. Thousands of people annually flock Uganda to see the mountain gorillas. The nation is home to more than half of the world’s remaining 880 mountain gorillas.
Dr. Kalema has in her study and research discovered another threat to mountain gorillas that is not the traditional poaching, war conflicts and loss of habitat. Due to the similarity between man and gorillas there is transmission of human diseases to gorillas known as zoonotic transmission. Diseases such as scabies and tuberculosis can be moved from man to animals. This threat brought Dr. Gladys Kalema Zikusoka to form the Conservation Through Public Health organization with mission to improve African public health to save gorillas.
The Conservation Through Public Health (CTPH) is a NGO with grassroots in Uganda and has spread its wings as far as the North Carolina State in the United States where the global hub is. It seeks to promote conservation and public health by uplifting primary health care to human and animals in gazetted areas. Dr. Gladys Kalema Zikusoka has received many awards like the Whitney Gold Award in 2009, the San-Diego Zoo Conservation in Action Award and the CEO Communications Africa’s Most Influential Women in Business and Government Award.
World over Dr. Gladys Kalema Zikusoka is fighting for a better future of for humans and gorillas and as the urge to see gorillas in Uganda becomes bigger. She is ensuring that the population grows to build a sustainable heritage so as all those seeking a Uganda Safari have ultimate memories .