Close to 500 communities in the environs of Amboseli national park have directly benefited from projects funded through the Magical Kenya Tembo Naming Festival launched two years ago.
On Friday, Tourism, Wildlife and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Peninah Malonza hosted a fundraiser dinner for the initiative that realised about Ksh12 million.
The Magical Kenya Tembo naming festival, which will be held sometime, next month at Amboseli national park is a joint ambitious initiative between the government and private sector to minimise human- wildlife conflict through a number of interventions,
From the Magical Kenya Naming festival debut, Kshs 16 million raised so far, 475 households are benefiting directly from projects already initiated key among them being water projects initiated to reduce the scramble for water resources between human beings and Wildlife.
So far, four boreholes have been dug near communities in the Amboseli ecosystem including; the Imarba borehole, Risa borehole, Olgulului borehole and Kimana borehole.
Further, through the initiative, additional land has been mobilised through partnerships with communities to minimise roaming elephants into the community land.
While presiding over the Magical Kenya Tembo Naming fundraiser dinner at Nairobi National park, Malonza said that the ever-growing demand for sustainable solutions has necessitated concerted effort by all stakeholders to conserve the country’s natural resources.
She noted that while conservation is a focus area in many parts of the world, Kenya is not immune from the problems associated with it. “As we transition the country towards sustainable tourism, we are looking at ways to make sure that our natural resources are well protected for the future. As you can see, the funds raised are going into projects that are improving the lives of communities and wildlife as well. she said.
“The Tembo Naming Festival champions for elephant conservation through various activities such as naming of elephants, collaring and tracking, community livelihood projects and conservation education programs. I applauded more than 20 proud parents who have shown their invaluable support by adopting elephants.” Said Malonza
The CS also noted with concern the effects of climate change pointing out the current drought situation that has also affected wildlife in Kenya. She stressed the need to consider long-term mitigation solutions.
“In recent years, we have seen the adverse effects of climate change and the great risk it is posing to wildlife resources due to extreme weather conditions such as prolonged droughts and lack of rains which have had devastating effects on our ecosystem resulting in reduced biodiversity and habitat loss among other things. It is therefore prudent that we must ensure that our wildlife resources are protected through appropriate legislation and policy frameworks, so that they can be managed effectively from an ecological standpoint,” Malonza said.
On her part, Kenya Tourism Board CEO, Dr. Betty Radier underscored the huge impact that conservation has had on the modern traveller’s awareness of environmental issues and their impact on the planet. She added that the current tourist demands a higher level of respect for nature and its inhabitants from both visitors and locals alike.
“Today’s traveller wants to do more than just visit a national park or go on a game drive. They want to experience and feel the impact of their travel and also be part of conservation efforts, as well as learn about how they can make a difference themselves in supporting conservation efforts. As a destination, we have to adapt and integrate our tourism offering accordingly so that we can attract more travellers who want to visit Kenya but also do something for the environment.,” she said.
Kenya Wildlife Service Director General Brig. (Rtd.) John Waweru said that by conducting wildlife monitoring through earth ranger systems and community grassroots projects, Kenya Wildlife Service aims to secure a better future for elephants and their habitats as well as foster peaceful co-existence with their human neighbours.
He also noted that the agency is committed towards identifying existing challenges in wildlife conservation and developing solutions that are holistic and sustainable from an environmental as well as socio-economic perspective.
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Publish date : 2022-11-05 14:11:00