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KWS completes training of over 300 community rangers
The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) Law Enforcement Academy will on Friday, April 13, 2012 hold a pass out parade for over 300 community rangers.
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’ capacity and private land-owners to establish and manage economically viable and sustainable nature-based enterprises within targeted areas of Kenya.
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 have been trained, three of whom are women, were selected from various conservancies across the country such as OlPejeta, Solio, Ishaqbin, Ndera and Westgate among many others.