The Namibian Lion Trust came into operation in January 2020, not an ideal time to launch a new charity! It is run by Tammy Hoth-Hanssen and has its roots in Afro-Leo and AfriCat North. Its principle aim is to support the local community farmers to live successfully alongside the lions that roam the area.

Key features of the project are the well-researched methods, local lion guards who are community farmers themselves, gps collars on lions to enable them to be tracked and an early warning system to help alert farmers if lions are in their vicinity.

A prolonged drought for ten plus years in the area followed by covid have taken their toil on man and beast. The good news is that the government has recently taken a more active interest in lion conservation (in addition to the efforts to conserve black rhino in the wider Damaraland area.) The result of this has been small pockets of funding, an increased number of lion guards/rangers across the region and closer cooperation with the NGO’s in the area. However, it is far from easy and remains an uphill battle to secure the funds needed to build a better future for all concerned.

In order to ensure the long-term survival of the lion (Panthera leo), the Namibian Lion Trust (Reg#T298/2019)  has developed three interdependent programmes to support the recovery, survival, and range-wide expansion of this Big Cat species, namely For Lions – For Life – For Our Future.

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Research essentially gathers accurate data on the demography and ecology of the lion within Protected Areas and on farmland; the monitoring of individuals and groups or prides, indicate the driving forces which stimulate lion to move, also quantifying both the degree of human-lion conflict and the impact it has on people living adjacent to parks and reserves as well as in wilderness areas, including communal farmland. Knowledge of lion movement patterns and home ranges in relation to livestock herds and settlements together with livestock protection programmes, encourages tolerance and enables co-existence.

Despite the growing willingness to ‘live with wildlife’, communal farmers struggle to survive in the harsh environment of Namibia’s north-west. An increasing number of farmers, however, now combine traditional methods with modern, arid-adaptive livestock and rangeland management techniques. Dedicated to protecting the lion as well as mitigating farmer-lion conflict, the Lion Guards monitor the whereabouts of both collared and uncollared lion in order to establish movement patterns. Together with the data retrieved from the GPS-Satellite collars, the widely dispersed trail cameras and lion-sightings by community members, the Lion Guards are able to forewarn farmers, resulting in fewer losses to predation thereby contributing towards greater understanding and acceptance of conflict wildlife. 


The Namibian Lion Trust is dedicated to empowering communal farming communities to better manage and protect their livestock, ultimately mitigating conflict and minimizing the retaliatory killing of predators. Through Conservation Education and holistic rangeland management programmes, otherwise subsistence farming practices may be augmented to uplift livelihoods, regaining economic stability.