Having finally started to bounce back from the worst of the pandemic, Kenya has sadly experiencing a devastating drought, with various seasonal rivers dried up and frequent fires raging on Mount Kenya. Dry conditions on the conservancy means that wildlife are in desperate search of food and water. There are scarce resources available, causing understandable stress on the animals and communities across Northern Kenya. Despite these difficult circumstances, the ZEITZ foundation’s projects are continuing as much as possible.This drought has been an important reminder of how precious a resource water is in Sub-Saharan Africa, and we are now at the final stage of planning a new and sustainable water source for Segera Conservancy, introducing a large new water dam that will be essential for the future survival of our forests and wildlife. With climate change disturbing seasonal rain patterns and increasing the intensity of drought periods, it is an absolute necessity to have a safe and consistent source of water for both the wildlife and the wilderness. Thanks to all of you who have contributed to our dam project, we will keep you updated on our progress.
Our ‘Tree of Life’ reforestation project continues to be an incredible success, with 279,427 trees planted so far. While we wait in hope for adequate rainfall for planting during the April/May rains, we have already germinated 260,000 Acacia tree seedlings which are growing well in our two nurseries on Segera Conservancy. Women from the surrounding communities have been employed to care for the seedlings during this period. We are incredibly grateful for all the support we have received for this project, through buying and donating trees.
As we continue to focus on providing top-quality education for the children of our nearby communities, we also learned of the urgent need to provide safe and secure early learning care for the working mothers of the SATUBO and surrounding communities. Since opening in 2021, the SATUBO Kindergarten has been extremely popular with preschool children attending from the SATUBO community and beyond. Due to this incredibly high demand, the ZEITZ foundation has now started construction on a second classroom, making more space for these important early years of learning and development. Again, this project could not have been completed without the generosity of our supporters. We are so thankful for everyone’s financial donations towards construction, teacher’s salaries, and also the kind gifts of toys, art supplies, playground equipment and other necessities. It is heartwarming to see our local kids thriving!
As urgency increases over protecting our planet from Climate Change and we face the irreversible impacts on natural resources in Kenya, the ZEITZ foundation is making critical plans for a sustainable water supply for biodiversity. With increasingly more severe drought patterns forecast for the future, we surveyed, approved and installed a new borehole on Segera in 2020, which we are completing with solar pumps and water pans for wildlife. Planning for the long-term, we will also now embark on an ambitious project to build a 50-acre water dam on Segera that will ensure sustainable water safety in the greater area for future generations.
In recent months we have also been developing our Vocational Training Academy for Permaculture, training local community members how to significantly enhance their farming techniques and make themselves more productive as well as sustainable. Thanks to our donors, the ZEITZ foundation recently purchased some land to develop the academy’s “Permaplot” – where new Permaculture subjects and theories will be put into practice with hands-on activities and examples.
Our men and women anti-poaching rangers are continuing their hard work to protect wildlife on the conservancy and surrounding areas. Recent training programs have further enhanced their skills, including advanced training in Commander & Leadership and Rapid Response. These training sessions not only keep rangers’ knowledge and expertise at optimal levels, but by repeatedly investing in their education, it helps to motivate and empower the rangers to continue their careers on the front line of conservation.
Thank you from all of us at the ZEITZ foundation, Segera Conservancy and our surrounding communities in Kenya