The Mara Festival of Cricket 2012
The fundraising from the cricket has an enormous impact on the livelihoods of so many people. This fundraising has also put the Emarti Secondary School in a position which will allow it to raise funding from further afield. Syngenta has continued to partner with Mara Cricket Festival to raise the education level of the surrounding children and environment conservation.
The money raised from the 2011 Mara Festival of Cricket has gone into the completion of the fencing of the entire school compound (350,000/-). This has hugely improved security for the children and the schools and their equipment which has helped the school enormously. The boy's dormitory has been built (200,000/-) desks and chairs have been purchased for the classrooms (60,000/-) and 75,000/- was donated to the school for more administration purposes such as planning permission, registration with the Ministry of Education and tuition support.
There are many challenges faced in the area, and prioritizing on where funding should go is always a difficult decision. We feel optimistic that the cricket fundraising since 2008 (over 1.6 M Shillings) for the school has put both the primary and secondary schools in a good position to move forwards independently as well as ongoing support from Olerai, the CDF, friends and family.
This year's fundraising will go towards the Enonkishu Conservancy, whose efforts to help conserve the community owned land surrounding Olerai Farm have been strong but they are in desperate need of any support they can get. This Conservancy was set up in 2010 and is managed by Tarquin and Lippa with support from a committee with representatives from the landowning families in the area. The main issues they face are deforestation, illegal charcoal burning, cattle overgrazing and overstocking and recently a surge in poaching in the area, as has been seen Kenya-wide.
They were all shocked and saddened to see 5 elephants killed in March. This picture above was taken by Tarquin, as the scouts found it; sadly 3 out of the 5 killed had both tusks removed. This one was found in a thicket close to the farm, where it must have died after the poachers had left with the ivory from the other 3 elephants. Without any infrastructure, little can be done to protect the game that is so vulnerable in these areas buffering the Greater Mara Ecosystem. Any support from the Mara Festival of Cricket will go a long way in helping the conservancy set up security systems that will enormously help this volatile 24,000 acre area of land.
Enonkishu Conservancy needs to get the legal framework set up to become an organization that can get the support it needs coming in. It also needs to invest in its 8 scouts that need to be fully trained in anti poaching with the support of the KWS. They also need simple rangers posts in prime locations to provide a security presence. The scouts need to be equipped to monitor numbers, locations, movements, breeding and living conditions of the elephants in order to gather critical information to provide them with more security. Other initiatives the conservancy are working towards is cracking down on the illegal charcoal enterprises going on through forming a Charcoal stakeholders program through which they hope to provide training in tree planting, efficient harvesting of branches only and the use of more efficient kilns.
We really feel positive this fundraising can have a big impact on the Enonkishu Conservancy.
On behalf of the Enonkishu Conservancy and the Emarti Development Committe