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Enhancing Habitat Rehabilitation Through Community Engagement and Action


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Enhancing Habitat Rehabilitation Through Community Engagement and Action
Brian Waswala, RCE South Rift
8th African RCE Meeting
8-10 August, 2018, Zomba, Malawi

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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Enhancing Habitat Rehabilitation Through Community Engagement and Action

  1. 1. Enhancing Habitat Rehabilitation Through Community Engagement and Action Brian Waswala RCE South Rift, Kenya Presented at the 8th African RCE Conference 9th August, 2018, Zomba, Malawi
  2. 2. Overview of Presentation i. Location of activity site ii. Sustainability challenges faced in the area iii.Objectives of RCE activities iv. Target audience and community engaged v. Activities undertaken vi. Impacts of the activities vii.Factors contributing to success of the project viii.Challenges and opportunities ix. Way forward
  3. 3. Location: Narok and its environs lies south east of Nairobi Population: The town has an estimated population of 40,000 inhabitants Climatic condition: Arid area Community: Predominated by the Maasai community Socio-economics: The community engages in livestock husbandry, agricultural production, trade and wildlife conservation (Maasai Mara Game Reserve)
  4. 4. Sustainability Challenges facing Narok  Increased land degradation and subdivision due to increased anthropogenic development  Poor waste disposal, sanitation and management emanating from the town and poor consumption patterns  Habitat degradation (division of farmland and forest ecosystems)  Poverty  Lack of sustainable energy (most community members use wood- fuel  Low education standards and marginalization of the girl child;  Wildlife poaching
  5. 5. o Most of these challenges are attributed to increased socio- economic empowerment and poor environmental awareness  Results into deaths and loss of livelihoods (drought, flooding, disease incidents, resource conflicts etc.)
  6. 6. Objectives of the ESD Awareness Program  To promote positive behaviour change on the environment for sustainability;  To increase citizen accountability towards a clean and healthy environment through national / international policies;  To promote alternative livelihoods geared at ensuring economic empowerment;  To enhance peace through equitable natural resource use; and  Contribute to Kith Kenya’s ESD Policy (2017); Africa Union’s Agenda 2063; UNFCCC Youth Agenda; Africa Environmental Education and Training Action Plan (2015-2024); UNESCO GAP on ESD, UN SDGs) Target audience • Students / academia of Maasai Mara University; • Communities (youth, women / girls, marginalized communities); • County and national government agencies; and • Conservation stakeholders.
  7. 7. Activities undertaken  Indigenous seed collection in the community forests and conservancies;  Formal education on Environmental Planning, Forestry, Wildlife and Sustainable Tourism related courses;  Seed nursery establishment through youth groups and eco-clubs;  Tree growing as opposed to tree planting: on-site botanical garden (in line with Kenya's 10% tree cover / UN / UNFCCC);  Outreach and awareness on suitable tree species and habitat suitability (collaboration with Kenya Forest Service, Kenya Forest Research Institute, Narok County Council and other stakeholders);  Energy efficient cook-stoves installation and use of biogas;  Agro-forestry and bee keeping – alternative income generation and food nutrition; and  Promotion and documentation of indigenous knowledge and sustainability practices.
  8. 8. Impacts of promoting sustainability awareness through communities and youth (formal and informal education)  Increased uptake of sustainability practices (UNESCO GAP on ESD)  Actual behavior change on how the student and community handle their waste  Reduced fuel-wood consumption  Increased climate change adaptation and mitigation through rehabilitation of degraded lands;
  9. 9.  Increased biodiversity awareness and livelihoods through eco-tourism;  Collaboration and cooperation of stakeholders;  Increased food nutrition  Promotion of indigenous knowledge (medicine and orphaned crops) – intangible benefits of conservation
  10. 10. Factors contributing to success • Coordination by RCE South Rift leadership; • Collaboration between various stakeholders (strengths); • Already noticed climate change impacts, need for lifestyle changes and energy demands. Challenges: Coordination and funding (volunteerism) Opportunities • Youth innovation and passion to have a better future; • Promotion of alternative IGAs (economic empowerment); and • Government and international policies; and • Immense community knowledge.
  11. 11. Way forward  Need for increased coordination and capacity development on ESD and players;  Upscale the projects on multiple sites and document on them; and  Documentation of indigenous knowledge (a lot of good practices that are undocumented / intangible). Thank you. Brian Waswala Prof. Francis Mburu, Coordinator, RCE South Rift /