EVA BEFORE SU4E.
Eva is a young female of around 30 years old. When we first met her few years back, she was giving rides to tourists, chained behind a hotel in a stressful and dirty environment. In 2018, she sustained injuries that limited her mobility, preventing her from working and left chained front and back legs, malnourished for months on end.
Unfortunately, little more is known about her past which was presumably very traumatic given her reputation as "dangerous". Psychological trauma often takes longer to heal than physical injuries.
Eva's transformation has been miraculous considering the state in which she was when she arrived at SU4E Home.
Despite her difficult past, Eva gradually learned to trust again thanks to the patience and love of the SU4E team. Eva has blossomed at the HOME and every day more of her unique personality emerges. She's extremely sensitive and keen to show affection.
She responded quickly to her medical treatment training using ethical operant conditioning methods. She loves spending time in her private pool and her favorite treats are watermelon & cucumbers!
Jamuna has been mahout for over 30 years, making him the oldest on the team. His vast experience and knowledge is invaluable! He has many great stories from a past generation, like how once he had to cross Nepal on the back of his elephant to participate in the ceremonies in Kathmandu of the royal family. At 57, Jamuna is very active. He is always in a good mood, cooks delicious food and enjoys every day seeing Eva and Lhamo enjoying their freedom.
At 21, Alam is the youngest of our Mahouts. He comes from a Mahout family and has worked with elephants from a young age. He and Eva formed an immediate bond, largely due to his comfortable disposition and knowledge of elephants. Alam has a natural instinct for the job but he's also a really nice guy and we're proud to have him on the team!
Kushbu, only 27, is our chief mahout. He comes from a long line of mahouts. The men of his family have been elephant handlers for several generations and his personal experience with more than 10 elephants, including bulls, has provided him acute instincts for effective handling and care. He has the self-assurance and natural precision and confidence that is reassuring to elephants. Kushbu was able to adapt easily to the new elephant management methods introduced by SU4E and has been a major factor in Eva's transformation.
LHAMO BEFORE SU4E.
Lhamo is a female of around 50 years old. Like Eva, little information is known about her past before she arrived in Nepal to work in the tourism industry. What is certain is that she's spent the better part of her life chained, malnourished and overworked.
She has been in Nepal for 10 years, she had at least one baby (whereabouts unknown). In 2019, she suffered serious digestion related problems causing her to lose a lot of weight.
Lhamo's transition to her new life with the non-profit organization SU4E was smooth, mainly due to her conciliatory character. Lhamo came in underweight with a few old wounds and overgrown unkept nails. She bonded quickly with Eva while exploring her new freedom becoming almost Eva's surrogate mother and the two are now inseparable.
Lhamo loves apples and pumpkins! And she also loves to scratch on trees and the special scratching posts in the enclosure of the HOME.
Ram is 29 years old and was already Lhamo's mahout before he arrived at the SU4E Home. He has been a mahout for about 10 years. His father was a farmer and not a mahout but Ram decided to work with elephants because of a lifelong fascination with these magnificent creatures. Ram & Lhamo have a very good connection. He is soft spoken and kind and Lhamo feels safe with him!
Suk Bahadur has been Lhamo's mahout for 5 years before their arrival at SU4E Home. The two know each other very well! Suk Bahadur is quite shy and calm, just like Lhamo! His passion for elephants does not come from a family tradition but rather from his friendship with the mahouts when he was a teenager.