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Introducing the Global White Lion Protection Trust

Our Organisation

The Global White Lion Protection Trust is a leading conservation organisation situated in one of the world’s most important ecosystems – UNESCO’s Kruger-to-Canyons Biosphere in South Africa. Founded by Linda Tucker and established together with the expertise of specialist lion ecologist, Jason A. Turner, the Trust is dedicated to protecting Africa’s most Sacred Animals.

Registered in 2002 as an NPO/Public Benefit Organisation, after a decade of prior research on the ecological and cultural importance of the White Lions, this pioneering community-based organisation has a long track record of uniting Indigenous knowledge and modern science to help protect this sacred species.

White Lions Restore Balance

Born by natural occurrence, in this region only on earth – one of the world’s last surviving lion ranges – the White Lions play a critical ecological and cultural role in the greater system. Ecologically, as the apex animal in this ecosystem, the White Lions restore and regenerate their land. Culturally, as the ‘King of Kings’ and a living symbol of good governance, the White Lions restore all ‘kingdoms’ and are revered as the holiest animals on the African continent.

“We have already said: if you kill the Lion, you kill the Khoisan. Now let it be recorded: If you kill the White Lions, you kill South Africa.” –  Khoisan leadership

Crisis Facing White Lions

After more than six decades of commercial lion trophy hunting and other forced removals in the Greater Kruger (Timbavati) region rendered the White Lions extinct in the wild, the Global White Lion Protection Trust instituted a successful reintroduction programme of these luminous animals back into the land of their origin, purchasing vast tracks of bushveld wilderness lands to create a protected area in the heart of the White Lions’ ancestral homelands.

According to Credo Mutwa, South African healer and prophet, known during his lifetime as ‘The Living Library of Africa’, the original meaning of the word ‘Timba-vati’ – now the name of a commercial private nature reserve in the region – refers to: “The Place where the StarLions came down.”

Two decades later, the pioneering reintroduction project lives on in three integrated (white and tawny) lion prides of high genetic integrity, and the protection of nearly 6,000 hectares of wilderness lands and associated biodiversity.

Although the Global White Lion Protection Trust has achieved triumphs against formidable odds for the White Lions, their ancestral lands, and the greater community, the crisis facing Panthera Leo today is catastrophic.

“Did we win our freedom for this? This quiet devastation of our country’s most sacred animals? Did we, by joining the ranks of the democratic countries of the world, also join those people who see it as their task to denude this planet of all life?”  – Credo Mutwa


While the White Lions are celebrated as a sacred living heritage by both local tribes and international indigenous communities these luminaries have been mercilessly persecuted by the modern world for their majesty: trophy hunted in the wild; artificially removed from their ancestral lands into zoos and circuses around the planet; and worse: forcibly bred in South Africa’s now-notorious cuddle-to-kill captive industry: cuddled as cubs by tourists, then killed as adults by trophy hunters.

“People come to my motherland, people come to South Africa to brutally murder the White Lions of Timbavati in the name of manliness and in the name of sport. DO NOT DESTROY THE SACRED LIONS OF THE GODS OF AFRICA.” – Credo Mutwa 


Linda Tucker has been campaigning against this diabolical industrialising of lions since the early ‘90s, and famously rescued a White Lion born in one of these death camps, before returning her together with her own cubs to the wilderness land of her origins, where her lineage survives to this day. Marah is a legendary lioness, born on Christmas Day 2000, in a South African town called ‘Bethlehem’.

After the Convention for the International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) legalised the lion bone industry in 2017 by approving permits for cross-border trade in dead lions, the South African government mandated the additional killing of as many as 1,500 lions annually, in order to export their skeletons to Eastern markets, including China, Korea and Laos. This was a particularly tough blow because, pre-CITES the One United Roar appeal was calling for a ban to trade in endangered species. Appallingly, these beautiful creatures, held under abysmal conditions of cruelty before being slaughtered for their carcasses, are the same lions who were once manhandled as baby cubs by people, including tourists and children on school outings.

Since the genetic marker (DNA code) for the white lion has been successfully identified, a moratorium preventing the hunting of lions in the Kruger-to-Canyons is an essential next step in scientific enquiry and national policy-making, which will enable us to protect the gene pool and gene carriers in the region.” – Jason A. Turner


Over the decades, Linda Tucker and Jason A. Turner have presented at Parliaments in South Africa and Britain, calling for a prohibition of this abomination.

In 2018-19, the Global White Lion Protection Trust convened a delegation that presented on behalf of the lions at the South African Parliament and subsequently helped formalise a coalition of international conservation and animal welfare organisations to hold governments accountable. Significant progress has been achieved through these collaborative efforts, with our sites set on permanently shutting down China’s ‘wet’ wildlife markets following the COVID-19 global pandemic, a catastrophe which this coalition had warned governments long in advance of its occurrence.

“You are killing our ancestors; you are killing our family.” – Moletele traditional leadership / traditional healers

Our Goal

As a leading conservation entity with a track record of achievements over the decades, the Global White Lion Protection Trust uses its international acclaim to influence a paradigm shift, not only in wildlife management but also in human consciousness.

The organisation does so by initiating and modelling this paradigm shift within its own programmes on the ground, while espousing leadership development locally and internationally through Linda Tucker’s LionHearted Leadership™ training initiatives, inspired by the White Lions and all they represent by way of earth stewardship.

In the heart of UNESCO’s Kruger-to-Canyons Biosphere region, using traditional living methods and heart-centered values combined with cutting-edge science, the Global White Lion Protection Trust has been implementing a multi-stakeholder strategy since 2002, thereby restoring unity amongst people and unification of wildlands.

The aim is to ensure that Lions, Land, and People live not only sustainably, but flourish in harmonious co-existence.

About Linda Tucker

After being rescued by a Tsonga medicine woman from a life-threatening encounter with a pride of lions in 1991, Linda Tucker gave up a career in international marketing to become a conservationist. Since this time, she has dedicated her life to the urgent protection of the critically endangered White Lions, venerated as the King of Kings by African elders. Despite their rarity and cultural importance, the White Lions have no protected status and may be trophy hunted in the wild and in captivity.

“Linda is destined to be a figure on the world stage such as Jane Goodall, or Desmond Tutu – someone whose eloquence and sheer force of lived conviction can move millions to see the creation with fresh eyes and act on its behalf.” – Andrew Harvey


To ensure the survival of this legendary animal, Linda Tucker has raised millions of dollars in a long-term strategy to return the White Lions to their natural habitat and ensure the protection of their greater ecosystem. Over the three decades of her conservation work, she has developed and launched a LionHearted Leadership™  model for humanity, inspired by the White Lions as icons of good governance and enlightened leadership. In 2016, she founded the Linda Tucker Foundation, which continues to support a LionHearted Leadership™  strategy in ecosystems and human systems for healthy living and a healthy planet.

“Linda Tucker has done a great job of chronicling the whole story and the mythology of these Sacred Animals…Through understanding the White Lion we will understand ourselves and our great role in the chain of being.” – Deepak Chopra

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