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326 Community rangers graduate from the KWS law enforcement academy

Date Published: 16 Apr, 2012
326 Community rangers graduate from the KWS law enforcement academy

KWS Board of Trustees Chairman Hon David Mwiraria inspects the parade mounted by the community rangers at the KWS Law Enforcement Academy. With him is Faculty Commander, Salim Abdallah (right) and KWS Director, Julius Kipng’etich

A total of 326 community rangers on April 13, 2012 became the latest batch of rangers to graduate from the KWS Law Enforcement Academy, Tsavo West National Park.  The community rangers have for the last three months been trained at the academy by the KWS in basic paramilitary procedures, ecology and ecosystem management, Management Information Systems (MIST) and enterprise development among others. The training is part of KWS function under its community enterprise development programme in its strategy towards reaching out to communities that interact with wildlife in all of Kenya’s eight conservation areas.

The main aim of the programme is to develop the communities and private land-owners capacity to establish and manage economically viable and sustainable nature-based enterprises within targeted areas of Kenya.
The initiative spearheaded by the KWS Community Enterprise Development Department has so far trained 606 community rangers. Speaking during the pass out parade, KWS Director, Julius Kipng’etich said KWS was willing to train more community rangers and work together with conservancies to protect wildlife.  The Director further said the Kenya Police had agreed to issue some of the community rangers with firearms licenses to step up protection of wildlife. To assist them in their work, Mr Kipng’etich said that the Government will offer the community rangers food rations while on patrol.

The course programme has managed to tap into abundant indigenous knowledge from a wealth of field experience for conservation purposes.  The training of community wildlife rangers is critical towards sustainable wildlife conservation and management outside protected areas and goes hand in hand with KWS’s corporate policy on the establishment of private and community conservancies in Kenya through capacity building. The main issues affecting conservation outside protected areas include human-wildlife conflict, wildlife insecurity, space for wildlife, limited technical and financial capacity to manage wildlife, limited wildlife education and awareness and slow implementation of compatible land use policies. The community rangers who graduated, three of them being women, were selected from various conservancies across the country such as Ol Pejeta, Solio, Ishaqbin, Ndera and Westgate among many others.

No.    Name    Trainees
1    Pilot NRT    1
2    Elsas kopje    3
3    Ruko    6
4    Ngare Ndare    9
5    Kalama    9
6    Ishaqbin    9
7    Mpus kutuk    9
8    Ndera    10
9    Olpejeta    10
10    Il Ngwesi     10
11    Elkarama    10
12    Melako    11
13    Ltungai    12
14    Meibae    12
15    Oloisukut    12
16    Buliqo Bulesa    13
17    Lekuruki    13
18    Naibun'ga    13
19    Sera    14
20    Nakuprat    15
21    Solio    16
22    Westgate    17
23    Leparua    18
24    Namunyak    34
25    Kuku Ranch    40

TOTAL    326

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