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It’s amazing how something so spectacular can be borne out of passion and drive.

About: Elda Fornasari-Thomas

“Passion for preserving our wildlife and watching the TV programme, Cake Boss was the inspiration behind the idea of creating a life-sized Rhino Cake” said Elda Fornasari-Thomas, founder of The Elephant Project SA and a wildlife enthusiast. “I wanted to give back and help the plight of the rhino’s in Africa” she said. In 2016 Elda collaborated with the dynamic Megan Carr from The Rhino’s in Africa Foundation and together they elicited the help of South African celebrity chef and master cake maker, Dot Klerck and “The Biggest Rhino Cake in the World” initiative was brought to life. Elda is also the founder of Slim Lady Wines and was one of the sponsors of the project. Proceeds raised from the Rhino Cake initiative were donated to the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre. Rhino’s in Africa foundation founded by Megan Carr was the conduit to ensure that the money went directly to the benefactors and 6 000 slices of cake were donated to the Food Bank.

The lifelike and realistic appeal of the rhino cake was a huge success and exceeded everyone’s expectations. This was the reason that 2017 brought on new challenge for Dot Klerck… “The Biggest Elephant Cake in the World”!  The elephant was chosen this year as their numbers are diminishing at a startling rate and are in dire need of awareness and funding.

Dot again volunteered her phenomenal skill and precious time, Elda put together a dynamic team, the new recipient chosen (All the funds raised will be donated to “International Fund for Animal Welfare” (IFAW) and The Elephant Project SA will use the Good Food and Wine Fair as it’s platform to present “The Biggest Elephant Cake in the World”.


About: Dot Klerck

Dot hails from Wellington and honed her skills in art and sculpture before falling head over heels into the sugar world. Now an award-winning cake artist, she started out making cakes for her children and from there it became her business. Her cakes have been featured on television, both locally and internationally and in many international cake magazines and art books over the years. Starting out with unique hand modelled toppers she now specializes in 3D sculpted cakes. Dot is invited to teach at Sugar schools all around the world and continues to create cakes in between international classes. Dot lives in Wellington, with her husband (the brain behind the engineering and structural design of many of her cakes) and her four children.

She is passionate about wild life, combining her skills and talent in this cake project enables her to both educate others on the plight of our African giants and indulge in another extreme cake project that she so enjoys. All of this of cause would never be possible without our faithful sponsors. These kinds of projects don’t only consume huge amounts of time to plan and construct but also require truck-loads of cake, buttercream, chocolate, fondant and other materials. Value Baking Supplies have very generously agreed to supply us with all edible parts of this giant cake.  A huge big thank you!


The only time the cake will be available for the public to see, will be at the Good Food and Wine Show on Friday 2nd June to Sunday 4th June 2017 at the CTICC in Cape Town. Donations can also be made at the show.

About: IFAW

Founded in 1969, IFAW rescues and protects animals around the world. With projects in more than 40 countries, IFAW rescues individual animals, works to prevent cruelty to animals, and advocates for the protection of wildlife and habitats. For more information, visit Follow them on Facebook and Twitter.  IFAW is delighted to have been chosen as the beneficiary organization by the Elephant Project SA, in its initiative to create the biggest elephant cake in the world, and to raise awareness of the threats to elephants from poaching and illegal wildlife trade. “A recent study shows 100,000 elephants were killed for their ivory in just three years from 2010-2012, and a continent-wide survey of African elephants released last year estimates savannah elephant populations to be shrinking by eight per cent per year, largely due to ivory poaching,” said Dr Joseph Okori, Southern African Regional Director for IFAW. “That means that more elephants are being killed by poachers than are being born and, if the trend is not reversed, parts of Africa will witness local extinction of elephants. “The Biggest Elephant Cake in the World” project is a wonderfully fun way to introduce a deadly serious subject to visitors to the Good Food and Wine Show, and to help fund the critical work of our Landscape Conservation Programme to protect elephant habitats, manage human-elephant conflict, prevent poaching, end the ivory trade and rescue and rehabilitate elephants,” said Dr Okori.

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About: Good Food and Wine Show 2017

Maria Chieppa, Managing Director, Fiera Milano Exhibitions Africa:
“Fiera Milano Exhibitions Africa and GF&WS provide a big platform for the food and wine industry, attracting thousands of visitors each edition. We support the economic growth of this important sector especially its SMMEs. We feel responsible for the territory we operate in hence support different CSI projects. Among the others, this year we are honoured to support The Elephant Project SA – an important initiative to create awareness around the plague of elephant poaching and safeguarding natural richness. Support the project with us and don’t miss the biggest teenage elephant shaped cake, which will be displayed at the Cape Town GF&W Show from 2nd to 4th June 2017 at the CTICC.

For more information on what’s on: Web:

About: Art Competition

“Love that Elephant!” Art Competition for Learners aged 6-12 years old.  Who doesn’t love an elephant? This is a trunk call, inviting all learners aged 6-12 years old to send us artworks that show just how much you care for elephants. The best picture will win its artist an iPad, and will go on display at the Good Food & Wine Show in Cape Town in June – right next to the “Biggest Elephant Cake in the World!” And if our lucky winner hails from the Western Cape, they and their parents, and their teacher and fellow classmates will receive entry to enjoy the Good Food & Wine Show. The winner will be announced on 12 May 2017.  All details on how to enter the competition please go to the web:

About: Gala Fundraising Cocktail Party

We will be hosting a Cocktail Party in the VIP lounge at the CTICC to unveil our Biggest Elephant Cake in the World at 18h00 on Thursday 1st June 2017. There will be an auction that evening to raise funds for IFAW. Wonderful limited edition items will be on offer including, a five-star safari trip, beautiful artwork, and of course the most important piece, the Elephant cake itself. You will be able to own and name this masterpiece and can donate the cake to your favourite charity. The winning piece of art from our Children’s Art Competition, will also be showcased that evening.

Our celebrity chef Dot Klerck, will be present at the event. Charity, good food and wine, meeting new friends, and all for a good cause.

For information on the Cocktail Party or to attend, please contact : Elda Fornasari-Thomas on email:  RSVP by 25th May, 2017

Other donation opportunities:

Please visit our website to donate:

Limited edition T-shirts will be on sale during the GF&W Show

Direct donations can also be made: “The South African Wildlife Project”                                            Standard Bank Constantia                                                                                                                Branch code: 02530900, account number: 242577180

A donation box will be available at the GF&W Show

Professional instant photographs with the Elephant Cake will be available for the                         duration of the show

For donation enquiries: Contact:

Please like our Facebook page: The Elephant Project SA

To follow us on Instagram: @theelephantprojectsa

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