Following our successful event in August, we recently hosted a second community engagement activity at a local primary school. More than fifty children gathered together with several community members and representatives from the Lion Guardians team for an event filled with fun and excitement!
Our first goal was to celebrate the benefits of community-driven conservation with all the attendees to help cement their understanding of, and enthusiasm for, coexistence. Two Guardians shared details of their jobs, from lion-tracking technology to their passion for community assistance. They also explained the value of literacy, and how it made their work possible. Then, the group discussed the importance of wildlife and the many ways that coexistence can benefit communities’ livelihoods. The youth, excited about these ideas, agreed to start helping reinforce bomas to assist Lion Guardians in preventing depredations (and the very next week, the students took their first step by fencing a boma in the community!).
After these discussions, we gave awards to the eight best-performing pupils in the school to encourage all the students to work hard and continue their education. Our goal is to help enable students to gain the knowledge and experience to fulfill leadership roles in their community and beyond. The students, along with the rest of the community, were very grateful for Lion Guardians’ support of local progress and development.
Finally, it was time for the Seedballs! Inside these tiny charcoal-coated balls are indigenous tree seeds; the coating helps protect the seed until conditions are just right, then nurtures the seed inside to germinate. Seedballs are a great way to replace some of the trees that have been lost to deforestation, and to help improve the local habitat. The attendees enthusiastically threw the seedballs all over the school compound, excited for the seeds to eventually germinate.