The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) as part of the civil engagements prerogative in the ongoing Multi-Agency Field Training Exercise, has continued to collaborate with Amu Conservation Trust Project, to promote its three pillars; conservation, collaboration and enterprise.
The Amu Conservancy, a conservation for wildlife in Lamu County, is a partnership involving the local community, David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and KWS. The arrangement is that the community provided the land for conservation, David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust assists in the management of the conservancy while KWS is the custodian of wildlife.
KWS collaboration with local communities and partners is aimed at creating space for wildlife conservation, reducing human-wildlife conflict and degrading poaching. This in turn promotes the safety and well-being of communities and wildlife.
Speaking during a meeting with area residents the warden in charge of security in Lamu County, Mr. Zachariah Ongeri, emphasized that collaborating with locals was essential in protecting both humans and wildlife. “This arrangement was necessary without which wildlife conservation in the area would be a challenge,” Mr. Ongeri explained.
“As KWS, we have to incorporate various stakeholders to achieve the objectives of wildlife conservation,” he added.
Mr. Ongeri further clarified that it was a challenging task, to balance humanity and animals because, “wildlife exists both inside and outside the conservation areas.”
KWS, through its National Game Scouts Engagement Program, has assisted in the engagement of Community Game Scouts in collaboration with other wildlife conservation partners. This efforts have also benefited the Amu Conservancy Community Game Scouts who are assisting with the conservation of wildlife and environment in the 65,000-acre land.
The scouts were thankful for the engagement as it had improved their livelihood. One of the scouts at the initiative, Miss Kache Katana Masha, explained that the engagement had by far changed their lives for the better.
“I am appreciative of the conservancy initiative because I can now pay school fees and provide for my family. Our youth are also now engaged and not involved in criminal activities,” she affirmed.
KWS is part of the Multi-Agency team under Operation Amani Boni (OAB) that is deployed in Boni enclave to restore normalcy.