Cher Rescues 'World's Loneliest' Elephant & Places Him In Cambodian Sanctuary

Dec 11, 2020
10:53 A.M.
Share this pen

US pop artist Cher recently bought Kaavan, the “World’s loneliest” elephant. She has since moved him out of captivity and made arrangements to place him in a Cambodian sanctuary.


The 36-years old Kaavan has been labeled the ‘world’s loneliest’ elephant. He had been living in captivity in a zoo in Islamabad, Pakistan, for 35 years. Initially, the elephant had one friend, Saheli, who unfortunately passed away in 2012, leaving Kaavan feeling lonely and abandoned.

Kaavan was in deplorable conditions in the Marghazar Zoo in Islamabad. The combination of his losing his friend and the terrible environment caused a decline in his physical and psychological state.

Cher Finds Out About Kaavan


Cher said that she found out about Kaavan and the conditions he was living in through Twitter. After hearing about his impoverished state, she was deeply moved and wanted to rescue the lonely elephant.

The American pop singer continued her efforts to help Kaavan throughout 2016. She even dedicated a song to him, titled “A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes,” and co-founded the charity Free The Wild.

On Monday, Cher took to her Instagram account earlier to announce that Kaavan was finally being loaded onto the plane for his journey to Cambodia. The lonely elephant will finally have a chance to make new friends.


Kaavan’s Stay In Pakistan

According to Four Paws International, when Kaavan was a year old, he had been presented to Pakistan as a gift from the Sri Lankan government in 1985. However, after his elephant companion passed away, the zoo’s grim conditions started affecting his mental and physical health.


The zoo where Kaavan had been kept was closed earlier this year, as per the orders issued by the Islamabad High Court. The orders further stated that Four Paws International was free to move Kaavan out of the zoo to be placed into an animal sanctuary.

Kaavan’s Poor Condition In Pakistan


Kaavan, who has spent most of his life in Pakistan as the country’s only Asian elephant, had been suffering immensely. Cher had been actively involved in advocating Kaavan’s rights since 2016, sharing her thoughts and feelings on her Twitter and Instagram accounts.

She even contacted the government officials in Pakistan, asking them to help her rescue Kaavan. The pop star has now thanked them for their support and help in rescuing the elephant.

Kaavan’s Rescue And Documentary


The Grammy winning singer arrived in Pakistan and helped move Kaavan out of the zoo by loading him safely onto the plane to Cambodia. He will now be kept in a sanctuary where he will be provided a safe and natural environment, and he will also be free to interact with other elephants.

Kaavan’s journey will be shown in a documentary by the Smithsonian Channel. This documentary will talk about the years he spent in captivity and how he was rescued. The show, which is set to be released in 2021, will reportedly be titled “Cher’s Elephant Airlift.”