Eco Tourism & Sustainability
Namunyak means ‘the place of peace’ in the Samburu language.The Namunyak Wildlife Conservation Trust, an area of approximately 75,000 hectares, lies folded around the southern corner of the fabled Mathews Mountain range of northern Kenya, home to the proud Samburu tribespeople, a group of semi-nomadic pastoralists who have for long shown tolerance for the wildlife that co-exists alongside their cattle.The Namunyak Wildlife Conservation Trust was set up in 1995 specifically to promote wildlife conservation and to assist the local community to benefit from tourism, in return for protecting the wildlife species living on their land.
The Trust is represented by a democratically elected ‘Board of Trustees’.
The aims of the Trust are;-
– The advancement of conservation efforts and the development of wildlife resources.
– The advancement of environmental education and awareness of the use of water development and other natural resources.
The primary activities of the Trust thus far have been to set up basic infrastructure and to generally improve the security of the area. A project co-ordinator and a fully trained team of game scouts were employed in 1995, an administrative office set up in Wamba, and an efficient radio network, consisting of both VHF and HF base station radios deployed throughout the area.
The conservation work carried out by the Namunyak Trust to date has been hugely successful. As a result of the severe ivory poaching crisis of the mid 1970’s and early ‘80’s, there were no recorded elephants remaining in the Mathews range by 1985. Today, several thousand elephant are recorded as living and breeding peacefully in the southern Mathews range area, together with a wide variety of other wildlife species such as buffalo, lion, leopard, cheetah, African wild dog (possibly 70), greater and lesser kudu, gerenuk, reticulated giraffe, impala and dik dik.
The camp is powered by solar energy generated by several sets of solar panels. Fresh food is kept, not in a refrigerator, but in a specially designed charcoal store. Twice a day the charcoal is soaked withwater and evaporation keeps food at cellar temperatures. All water is gravity feed a fresh, pure mountain springs – no pumps required – and then pass through a UV filter. Bottles/glass/plastic/tins are all removed from Sarara and recycled. Solar panels run all freezers etc. Minimal chlorine is used in the pool. Sewage is sent into soak away tanks. And the buildings all use local naturally felled trees and local stone.