"Ultimately conservation is about people. If you don’t have sustainable development around wildlife
parks – then the people will have no interest in them and the parks will not survive." NELSON MANDELA
AfriCat UK is a registered charity whose vision statement is "Conservation, Environmental Education, Research and Community Enhancement". We predominantly support and raise awareness of the AfriCat Foundation (a registered Namibian not for profit organisation).
AfriCat Foundation HQ is based at Okonjima www.okonjima.com, a private, 200km² nature reserve, 50 kilometers south of Otjiwarongo in central Namibia, and the AfriCat North base borders, western Etosha National Park. The AfriCat Foundation was founded in the early 90's and formally registered as a non-profit organisation in August 1993.
AfriCat has since grown significantly and what started out primarily as a welfare organisation has over the years identified the need to include a focus on child and adult education and research as being essential to accomplishing our mission - the long-term conservation of Namibia's large carnivores and the enhancement of the surrounding communities.
On Sunday the 20th May AfriCat UK’s Director and Trustee was a member of the panel at the Bradt’s Big Cat Festival. He shared the platform with CCF’s Director Dr Laurie Marker, Jonathan Scott and Dr Sarah Durant who were discussing with Adrian Philips MD of Bradt Travel Guides and an audience at the RGS London ‘Big Cats and their future’. The panel agreed that there is a very real cause for concern for the long term survival of these wonderful cats, running wild in Africa and across the world, with land pressures and other risks like poaching and the threat of isolation for surviving populations ever present. The panel felt by working together, good use of technology, education across the planet and helping local people to benefit from the ‘wild resources’ they lived with then the future of these magnificent cats might be a reality for future generations.
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Working with Communal Conservancies - An opportunity to transform livelihoods.
The importance of working with the communities who live alongside predators and suffer loss of livestock has perhaps not always been seen as crucial to long term sustainable populations of carnivores but is essential. Isolated populations in parks will not ensure the survival of endangered species in the wider eco systems. In the northwest around Kaross, most Conservancies rely on subsistence farming, herding goats and cattle. They live next to a National Park with healthy populations of lion, hyena, leopard and cheetah. The results are predictable. Unprotected livestock is picked off by predators and poor communities struggle. AfriCat works with the Communal Conservancies to build strong kraals (livestock enclosures) to protect animals, to encourage employment of herdsmen and to manage grazing to improve grass quality. The impact on these farmers’ lives from small changes in practice and assistance in the cost of protecting their animals can be transformational.
The Onguta pre/lower primary school in the Ehirovipuka conservancy is located in the north west of Namibia (Kunene region) was a mobile school (tented) due to the far sighted headmen and his commitment to conservation of carnivores, AfriCat offered to build a school. Which will be developed over three phases.
Phase 1 - 4 classrooms and an allusion block including showers and toilets, phase 2 - Admin block including library and dining kitchen area, phase 3 - staff accommodation & boarding house. As most of the kids have to walk up to 30km to reach their classroom.
Phase one (classrooms 1&2 and 3+4) of the a six phase project: 'Conservation Through Education’.
AfriCat is raising funds to build schools that follows conservation principles and together we hope to encourage and inspire conservation-minded Namibians.
Read our page Onguta Primary School to follow all updates on the project.
AfriCat is delighted to have been chosen by Blair Drummond Safari Park to be their charity of the year and are very pleased to be working with them to raise awareness of the plight of lions in the wild and will help their fund raising efforts for a collar to support the AfriCat Lion Research Project. Many thanks to Stuart and the Team at Blair Drummond
Tackling human wildlife conflict is at the centre of AfriCat's work. AfriCat UK is seeking to raise the funds to buy and equip a mobile vet clinic.
The plan is to use the vehicle to help to:
Such projects illustrate the value of keeping carnivores in the wild as it is local people who directly benefit from wildlife conservation and work alongside other community support and education projects.
Donations can be made by clicking here. More information on the project can be found at www.africat.org on the projects and wish list pages. If you have fund rising ideas we would just love to hear from you: email: email@example.com
Recruited from the communities they serve the Africat Lion Guards play a vital role in supporting fellow farmers to adapt and adopt researched livestock management techniques and husbandry that have been shown to help reduce livestock losses to predation and help the farmer to build their livelihoods in a sustainable way. The Lion Guards working under the direction of Tammy at AfriCat North and with the backing and approval of the senior members of their communities help with a range of tasks from monitoring boundary fences to supporting kraal building. AfriCat UK is seeking funding of £25,000 to meet the costs for a year. Donations really help Africat and the community work together for the benefit of all. Do let us know of any fundraising idea you have by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, all contributions go direct to the project and make a difference. More information can be found at AfriCat: Lion Guards