I am always encouraged when I discover how much rural communities are doing, with meager resources for the conservation of biodiversity. Today I would like to welcome The Water Hole an appropriately named blog run by the East African Wildlife Society, the Cousin Island and the Giraffe Sanctuary blogs. All three new blogs represent important conservation activities in the region. The EAWLS has been at the forefront of conservation in East Africa since 1961 – this advocacy group is something of a watchdog keeping our government policies in check by engaging the population. Their magazine SWARA is perhaps the most informative wildlife journal in the region. The coming issue focuses on one of our greatest concerns, mountain gorillas in the eastern Congo.
I’d also like to introduce a unique project in Garissa, north eastern Kenya. This semi arid area is populated by semi nomadic people who have voluntarily decided to protect the herds of giraffe that are highly threatened here. I am inspired by the warden and his scouts who patrol and do snare removal in the area, educate the population and stop the habitat destruction. These people living in an extremely dry harsh environment, are doing it as volunteers.
Finally, Cousin Island in the Seychelles is home to many endemic species of frogs, birds, fish and plants. This unique island is managed by a local NGO Nature Seychelles, another example of local conservation. All these organizations are successful because they have developed a community of people who care. I hope you will take time to find out more about them and support them with your comments and donations.