After this brief return to Nairobi, George, Theo, and I were then sent out to the Samburu Heartland (also in Kenya but located north of Nairobi). This held a special interest for me as I visited this area on a short safari six years ago and fell in love with it. In fact, when I returned to England after that first visit was when I started learning basic Swahili (which turned out to be a fairly good move, all things considered).
I'm Theo Way Nana. I was born in the heart of Africa, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), a country with huge and diverse ecological potential. DRC is the country of the mighty river Congo and of prestigious endemic species like the bonobos, okapi , and the Congo peacock. It is in this country that I spent my youth dreaming of a world that ensures intergenerational equity and one where people are the beneficiaries of natural resource use.
I recently started working for the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) in its Conservation Management Training Program (CMTP). As with many of my previous travels, I have decided to blog about it: firstly, to reassure my mother that I am still alive, and secondly, so that anyone who is interested can get an idea of what I’m up to.
Conservation Management Trainees, George (left) and Sam
The undulating hills laced with eucalyptus and Markhamia lutea trees, peaks of granite rocks, and green valleys of corn and Napier grass I see in western Kenya today are now a pale shadow of the lush green hills and valleys, bushy grazing fields, and slowly flowing rivers that adorned the area 31 years ago when l was born.
With the world's many environmental challenges, we need youth to actively participate in finding solutions. Not when they become adults- their time is now! The same is true in IGCP's operational area, where a growing human population is sharing the region with the critically-endangered mountain gorilla.