The lands surrounding Amboseli National Park in Kenya are home to elephants, lions, cheetahs, giraffe, and many other African species. The Amboseli–Chyulu Wildlife Corridor is one of the main routes used by wildlife here, and this strategic wildlife linkage is critical to the region’s wildlife. But this land is under threat from habitat fragmentation and loss. Group ranch lands surrounding the park have been sub-divided and allocated to individual owners who are now selling their lots for development, and agriculture.
To prevent further habitat loss, AWF facilitated the signing of lease agreements with local landowners. These lease agreements secure the land for wildlife movement while providing income to the community.
Opened in 2010, Tawi Lodge is a luxury eco-lodge situated at the base of Mt. Kilimanjaro and in the middle of Kilitome Conservancy, a conservancy created by AWF and 100 Maasai landowners. While Tawi was already solely owned and under construction by a private operator when the Kilitome Conservancy was being formed, the owners willingly entered into a partnership with AWF and the communities in the Kilitome Conservancy to distribute benefits to community members and help create employment opportunities. As a result, a portion of bednight fees from each Tawi guest goes directly toward supporting the conservancy. Tawi Lodge also recently took over paying the conservancy scouts’ salaries, originally a responsibility of AWF’s.
Tawi Lodge provides a shining example of the conservation and socioeconomic gains that can be achieved for all when a private company proactively partners with AWF and local communities.
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