Saturday, January 8, 2011

Kenyan Kids on Safari? - Now It's Kenyan Teachers on Safari, Thanks to Ewaso Lions & Sasaab Lodge & KKOS

Reported by Shivani Bhalla of Ewaso Lions, Northern Kenya coordinator for KKOS

January 7th 2011: "Ewaso Lions works closely with Lpus Leluai Primary School in Westgate Community Conservancy. We have a number of projects with the school including Simba Stories, Trees Project and more recently the new Simba Library and Wildlife Club. Thanks to donors we have made numerous donations of books, stationary, posters and much more to the school. We have also taken the school children out on many game drives as part of our Kenya Kids on Safari programme."
"Towards the end of term, the teachers and Headmaster of the school, Johnson Lenasalia, asked Ewaso Lions if we could arrange an educational tour for all teachers as an incentive trip. Many of the new teachers had not seen much wildlife before and were keen to learn more. We are also in the process of setting up a Wildlife Club at the school from sale profits of the Simba Stories book. This would be an ideal opportunity to encourage the teachers and get them excited about wildlife which they would share with their students. I also personally wanted to thank them for their fantastic efforts in working together to create a suitable learning environment for the children over the past few years."
"Sasaab Lodge in Westgate Conservancy generously agreed for us to use their vehicle and guide Daniel for the teacher’s safari.
  Sasaab has been fantastic in promoting Kenya Kids on Safari and we would not be able to do any of this without their support. Thank you Sasaab Lodge and Ali and Tony Allport (the lodge managers) for your continued and much appreciated assistance."
"We set off on the safari at 7:30 am. The teachers were all super excited and enthusiastic about their trip. Daniel and I spoke about everything to do with wildlife in the area and the importance of wildlife in general. It was initially quite strange to be teaching teachers but we all got into it and had a fantastic day. We had some superb elephant sightings and were extremely lucky to spot a lion in the distance as well. The teachers learned about birds too."

Emanuel, excited and a little nervous about being so close to elephants!

William and Karimi see elephants so close up they don't need KKOS binoculars.

KKOS binoculars help to bring the lions closer in view.

Teachers, Daniel and Shivani during the safari in the Sasaab vehicle.

Here are some of the comments from the teachers:

“Personally I feel there is a need to appreciate this great game drive that Ewaso Lions and Sasaab have arranged for us. We learned a lot and will share our knowledge with the children. Paul, Supervisor of Wildlife Club”.

“Thank you very much for the game drive. I enjoyed it very much. Seeing a lion in the wild for the first time was great. Karimi, teacher sponsored by Sasaab“.

"Special thanks to Sasaab Lodge and their guide Daniel, and Todd Cromwell from the Kenya Kids on Safari Programme for donation of cameras and binoculars for the safari."

Friday, January 7, 2011

Ewaso Lions & Sasaab LodgeTake Warriors on Safari, adding another dimension to KKOS

November 25th 2010: Shivani Bhalla of Ewaso Lions, our Northern Kenya coordinator for KKOS, writes another page in helping local young men as well as kids to participate in wildlife education and conservation

Report by Shivani Bhalla of Ewaso Lions -

"Our warriors from the Warrior Watch programme have now been actively engaged in wildlife conservation since January. They are all doing really well and excited by their roles in conservation. As an incentive and also an evaluation of their wildlife knowledge to date, I arranged a day in Samburu National Reserve for the warriors. This would not have been possible without the generous support of Sasaab Lodge in Westgate Conservancy who lent us their vehicle and guide David for the day."
"The warriors all showed up in camp by 6 am and we all set off into the park. The warriors were equipped with binoculars and digital cameras thanks to our Kenyan Kids on Safari programme."

"We had a great day. Moses, the tourism warden for Samburu, gave them all a talk on the reserve, its importance and the wildlife in the area. We then set off on our game drive and saw tons of game; giraffe, kudu, Grevy’s zebra and much more. The warriors were so excited by everything and practiced the names of the animals in English and Swahili."
"We had an incredible elephant sighting with 2 resident families crossing the river right in front of us. The warriors said this was the first time they had been so close to elephants without the elephants charging at them or them running away. Most of them were desperate to see lions too. How could we not? With 7 Samburu warriors in the car, it would be hard not to find them. We found some tracks and sure enough about 10 minutes later, came across 6 lions."
                                                     Getting ready for the safari.


Lpuresi excited to see a greater kudu.

Lemeen was thrilled with the KKOS camera and took many photos of friends and wildlife.


Yesalai and Reria photograph and watch giraffe with KKOS cameras and binoculars.

Lentiyo watching elephants cross the Ewaso Nyiro.

 "This was the first time most of the warriors had been into Samburu National Reserve on a game drive, taking photos  with KKOS cameras and enjoying their experience as many tourists from around the world come to do.  We also dropped in at Save the Elephants where David, the head researcher, gave them a talk on elephants and the importance of their conservation."
"It was a super day. After a goat feast back at the Ewaso Lions Camp in Westgate, the warriors thrilled with their experience, wandered back slowly to their villages, excited by the day’s adventures and wildlife sightings. We hope to have many more warrior safaris in the reserves in the future."

"A special thanks to Paul Funston for accompanying us on this trip and taking some great photos, Sasaab Lodge, and Todd Cromwell from the Kenyan Kids on Safari programme for the donation of camera and binoculars."