Community Wildlife Fund

Income has been dramatically impacted by the Covid-19 global pandemic across the tourist industry. There has been increased bush-meat trade and poaching in surrounding game reserves and wildlife parks. Lack of revenue in park fees and the resulting job losses as well as a reduction of surveillance by rangers and closure of the livestock markets meant that closures of lodges and wildlife camps were inevitable.The pressure on wildlife is substantial and the livelihoods that have been sustained in supporting wildlife protection and conservation are critically at stake.
In response to some of these challenges, several private companies collaborated in April 2020 to set up the Community Wildlife Fund –

The Fund was able to support affected communities and rangers in Samburu, Kimana Conservancy, Masai Mara, Meibae Community Conservancy, Tsavo, Garissa County and Lumo Conservancy through food donations and the distribution of masks and soap. This intervention also included educating the communities on Covid-19 and how to implement hygiene and prevention measures. Food donations were central during lockdown due to the closure of local markets. Simultaneously, the Fund invested into sensitising communities who live next to protected areas to the benefits of wildlife protection through ‘Jeanie’s Bush Cinema’ which shows documentaries filmed in these protected areas.

Furthermore, the Fund has worked towards raising awareness within local communities of the dire situation that Covid-19 has brought upon them through talking to them about their challenges. Many of their anecdotal findings were captured in a documentary titled ‘The Unfathomable Virus’.To guarantee income, ten safari guides were trained to film and, where possible, assist in showing physical presence in the different parks to contribute towards reducing poaching. This exhibition is comprised of images taken in Kenya and contributed by a group of wildlife photographers who have been supporting the Community Wildlife Fund since its inception.

Andreas Knausenberger, Charl Stols, , FedericoVeronesi, Helena Atkinson, Jami Tarris, Janine Krayer, Paolo Torchio, Paul Souder, Sabine Stols, Sue Earnshaw and Theo Allofs.

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