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SKAL International visits Esiteti Primary School

The first week of December saw old friends visiting Esiteti Primary School near Tortilis Camp in Amboseli, Kenya.The founders of the A E Reimann Foundation, which is funded by SKAL International, visited the school to observe the progress of their classroom project and to visit and catch up with some of the 29 students they are funding through school.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The double classroom is due for completion this week, with only the plastering now remaining. The donors were delighted with the progress and have now donated a further sum to add an additional classroom. These three classrooms will house approximately 120-150 students, helping Esiteti grow further.

Another exciting project on the books is an outdoor classroom, developing a small shamba or farm to help the students learn about agriculture while providing food for the school itself. More on this exciting development to come…

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“Pride of Africa” by Klaus Tiedge

We are delighted to announce collaboration with and support from renowned fine art and wildlife photographer Klaus Tiedge.  

In a demonstration of his commitment to conservation of the wildlife and culture of East Africa, Klaus has pledged to donate 50% of the sales of his latest book “Pride of Africa” to the Land & Life Foundation.

Klaus is a talented and experienced professional photographer, and his images have a unique and magical quality to them. To read more about Klaus and to purchase this lovely book and give your support to Land & Life, please see his website here.

Thank you again for your support, Klaus – and to everyone else, enjoy the remarkable images in this wonderful book, perfect for a Christmas gift for that special someone!

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Giving Tuesday 2017

On 28th November Land & Life took part in #GivingTuesday, a global giving movement built by individuals, families, organizations, businesses and communities around the world. We were supported in this initiative by our sponsors the Elewana Collection, Cheli & Peacock Safaris and Sky Safaris.

Across their offices in Kenya and Tanzania, staff brought in donations of books and food for our Wildlife Warrior Primary Schools as part of a company wide charity drive.

Staff also participated in a WEAR GREEN day, making individual donations to the Land & Life Foundation and its Wildlife Warrior Program. Great fun was had as employees came in and dropped off donations while comparing green outfits.

The drive was an enormous success, with a vast amount of food and books for primary schools collected. In the New Year, the food and books will be delivered to the Wildlife Warrior schools in Kenya and Tanzania, so watch this space for updates.

 

Funds donated will go into the pots for Kachiuru School in Kenya and Ganako School in Tanzania. We will engage with the school committees and staff and make a decision on how to disburse the funds. As above, keep an eye on us to find out where and how the money is spent and what benefits the schools will receive.

And remember, it’s never too late to join in and give, so if you’d like to follow suit and contribute to Land & Life’s great work, please click here to find out how you can make a contribution.

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Annual Wildlife Warrior Retreat 2017

The Annual Wildlife Warrior Retreat was held this year on 13-17 November at the wonderful Lewa Conservation Education Centre. This event takes place every year and brings together the bright young students who are studying under the Wildlife Warrior Program Scholarship scheme, with a passion for conservation these young people are the future of wildlife conservation and habitat preservation in East Africa.

This year we hosted 27 students and their 5 patrons for a full three days at Lewa, participating in this year’s theme Water Conservation. The young people took part in drama and role plays, which they wrote and performed themselves; they experienced the wonders of wildlife through a  day of game drives, accompanied by experienced conservation educators and wildlife guides; they received mentoring and guidance sessions from Land & Life team and the Centre education professionals; and of course they had lots of fun.

 

 

The Annual Retreat is a crucial part of the Wildlife Warrior Program, keeping the young students interested and engaged in conservation throughout their secondary schooling. The team from Lewa CEC, inspired and professional, help the students to understand the possibilities of good wildlife and habitat management and highlight the challenges faced. The recurring event helps to develop a network of bright young people from geographically diverse areas, but all sharing the common experience of living in or near conservation areas. Mentoring of the students as they progress through their education and feeding in new concepts and new problem-solving and partnership skills is a vital part of helping them develop into strong conservation aware voices for their communities. Whether they be teachers, rangers, doctors or carpenters, they will be leaders within their communities, giving wildlife a voice at the table.

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For more information please see the Land & Life website or Facebook page, and to make a contribution to the Wildlife Warrior Program and help more bright students benefit, please make a donation here.

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6th Annual Aitong Medical Camp

This week Land & Life held our 6th Annual Free Aitong Medical Camp at Aitong Health Clinic in the Mara near to Elephant Pepper Camp. This year we are delighted to announce that we have reached a new record – the clinic saw and treated approximately 1200 people over the three days!

The team of volunteer doctors from Oasis Health Care were extremely enthusiastic and very efficient, working well with the Aitong Clinic Staff and nurses provided by the Narok District Hospital. They performed diabetes testing – HIV testing – cervical cancer screening – general medical check ups – dental check ups and treatments – family planning sessions – orthopaedic treatments – and more.

The cervical cancer screening in particular was an interesting issue. While it was welcomed by some women, for others it held a stigma, due largely to lack of awareness and understanding. We hope to work on this in the future, sensitising the community to the importance of such screening and reach even more women going forward.

Thanks to our partnership with NHIF, this year doctors were able to refer patients on for further treatment, ensuring that the camp has a wider impact than simply a one off day of treatment.

We are extremely grateful for the help and support of our partners Kicheche Camps and Saruni Lodges, Safarilink and Oasis HealthCare, and of course as ever the logistics and support from Elewana Collection’s Elephant Pepper Camp. Well done everyone and on behalf of the community, thank you for your generosity and support.

If you would like to make a seasonal, Christmas-inspired donation towards this excellent initiative please do click here and donate, specifying Aitong as your preferred project.

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More Books for Ganako Primary

Ganako Primary School in Karatu, Tanzania has once again received a generous book donation. This donation came from  from Ken Kurzweil and Suzanne Sunday who visited The Manor Ngorongoro earlier in the year. Thanks to their generosity, Land & Life was able to purchase 260 text books and 10 teacher’s books for the school.

The books were delivered to Mr Lembris the Headteacher on Monday October 2nd, and handed out to students to have a look at. Everyone was delighted, and sent great appreciation to the donors.

Ganako, which had absolutely no books at all when we first visited in March, now has 10 or 20 copies of each subject for every year, from Standard 4 through to 7, and once the Ministry of Education completes the new syllabus and publishes the new books, we hope to complete the set and get books for the other years as well.

The school committee have asked for our help in building a kitchen. The existing structure is built of wooden planks and poles, and is extremely basic.

From this they try to feed nearly 500 people and it is both awkward, unhygienic, and costly in terms of use of firewood. On our recent visit, Mr Lembris took us to see a nearby school which has a clean brick built kitchen housing a huge fuel-efficient stove capable of catering for 600 students. We are in the process of obtaining quotes, and will be moving forward with the construction shortly. Once again the funds for this have come from Ken and Suzanne, and we are so excited to be helping the school with this exciting infrastructural development.

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Groundbreaking Ceremony at Esiteti Primary

Exciting times at Esiteti Primary in Amboseli, near to Tortilis Camp. Thanks to a generous donation from the A E Reimann Foundation, a large-scale construction project is underway.  Two large classrooms accommodating forty students a-piece are being constructed, complete with full rainwater harvesting system. The classrooms will be added to the existing school buildings and will reduce the current pressure on the school, where students are crowded in and the designated computer lab is being used as a classroom instead.

The groundbreaking ceremony was held on Thursday 21st September and was attended by many of the school students as well as representatives of the school committee, the Headmistress Mrs Phides, Candy Smith manager at Tortilis Camp, Hannah and Steve from Land & Life and of course the contractors Cosmos Ltd.

After a ceremonial prayer and words of welcome from the headmistress, the contractors formally broke ground, and then everyone had a turn including students and teachers! It was a lively and exciting event and everyone looks forward to watching the progress as the classrooms take shape. We expect completion before the end of the year so watch this space for updates!

It is thanks to generous donations from visitors, made to address real urgent needs within the communities, that the Land & Life Foundation is able to continue to make a real difference to the lives of communities living in and around wildlife areas. Thanks for all your support,  everyone!

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Mwaroni Primary joins the Wildlife Warrior Program

We are delighted to announce that we have found a new partner school to participate in our Wildlife Warrior program.  Mwaroni Primary School is located in Diani Beach, Kenya, just a fifteen minute drive from Elewana’s Afrochic. With 631 students currently enrolled, and 20 teachers, Mwaroni is a lively school with a lot going on.

Mwaroni Primary has an active wildlife and environment club already, which is busy planting seedlings in the school nursery ready to plant out around the school grounds. The club is led by enthusiastic teachers Mrs Joyce and Mrs Mwamba. The Wildlife Warrior Club will work with the school environment club and we hope to help the children to go on some exciting field trips to nearby Mombasa.

Existing tree nursery

Wildlife club nursery

Tuition block

Semi-complete classroom blocks

Land and Life will also be raising funds for the school to buy a photocopier, and then provide much needed repairs to the girls toilet block which currently has no doors. Anyone who would like to help with these projects, please see our Ways-To-Give page and let us know your donation is for Mwaroni. You can also visit the school yourself, any time you find yourself relaxing in Diani.

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Land & Life and Elewana Collection host celebrations for World Sustainable Tourism Day!

An enjoyable evening was had by all at Arusha Coffee Lodge in Tanzania, where Land & Life and Elewana Collection hosted a celebration of UNWTO World Sustainable Tourism Day. Approximately 80 representatives from the top tier of Tanzania’s travel and tourism industry came together to celebrate the achievements in community and conservation and the strides taken in sustainable tourism in Tanzania. Live music, canapes and drinks welcomed the guests to Arusha Coffee Lodge as they mingled.

Guests included the Vice Chairman of the Board of Tanzanian Association of Tour Operators (TATO) Henry Kimambo and the CEO Sirili Akko, the Chairman of the African Travel and Tourism Association (ATTA) Julian Edmunds, and the team from Responsible Tourism Tanzania (RTTZ) Damian Bell and Julius Lesanoi.

Government representatives included Mr Michael Ndaisaba Tourism Officer from Arusha City Council and Ms Flora Mwambo from Arusha Regional Commissioner’s office.

The private sector was well represented, with attendees from almost all the large scale and many smaller local tour operators and hospitality companies, food and beverage suppliers, and more.

The guests enjoyed watching the Official Message from the President of the UNWTO Mr Taleb Rifai, who spoke of the need to work together to harness the power of sustainable tourism to contribute to global development. Guests also watched a short film from the International Year of Tourism 2017 team’s Travel.Enjoy.Respect. campaign and heard some words from Elewana Collection’s Hannah Wood on the importance of a sustainable approach to tourism and the activities of the private sector in conservation and community.

A light-hearted “Do-ers and Dreamers” competition was held, for companies and organisations to highlight their sustainability achievements to date and to encourage conversation and sharing of innovative ideas. Prizes were donated by Shanga by Elewana and the Honeyguide Foundation and the judging panel consisted of Damian Bell and Julius Lesanoi (RTTZ), and Tira Schubert (London-based East African and conservation specialist journalist).

First prize for sustainable tourism practice in action was won by Laurens Sans of Nyayo Discovery for their impressive range of community and conservation activities, including donating 10% of all profits to projects supporting local Maasai tribes. The prize for most innovative future suggestion was awarded to Niall Anderson of &Beyond for suggesting banning the use of fins in marine parks as so much damage is done to coral and marine life directly from fin use.

The evening was a great success, generating much discussion of the role of the individual stakeholder in sustainable tourism and the importance of the sector in contribution to regional development. Land & Life and the Elewana Collection are happy to have hosted the event and plans will be made for a follow up event next year.

A boost for L&L Branding

Elewana Collection continues to market Land & Life Foundation as its only charity. To ensure that the L&L brand is prominently displayed in Elewana properties, all camp vehicles been branded with our logo. Additionally, the new guest experience cards have a section where guests tick if they have heard about L&L during their stay.

These efforts will greatly boost our fundraising and we hope that we will soon receive more donations to continue supporting the communities that we work with. We sincerely thank the operations team for all their support in promoting L&L in the properties.