COMMUNITY

Social responsibility is just as important to us as conservation and environmental stewardship. Building a thriving community is about creating sustainable living solutions that are in sync with the needs of the people, the culture and the surrounding environment. It's the jobs that close the loop on successful conservation efforts that will be passed on to future generations.


Kasigau, Kenya

THE PROBLEM

When Wildlife Works first arrived, the community adjacent to the Rukinga Sanctuary had little in the way of infrastructure. There were few schools, jobs, clean water supply, the basics. With desperation and neglect high, it was no wonder that the community was resorting to extreme measures for survival. Animals were hunted for their tusks, skins and commercial bush meat. The surrounding forest was clear cut for unsustainable farming practices.

THE SOLUTION

We created jobs to develop our conservation and fashion business as well jobs for community development. When Wildlife Works came to this region of Kenya, we were met with some apprehension. The local community had seen numerous aid organizations come and go with short-term financial handouts and unfulfilled promises. It took time for them to see that Wildlife Works was here to stay.

SCORECARD

Our market-based conservation solution is sustainable because of job creation, which is paid for by consumer demand for our products, whether it's our carbon offset credits or fashion apparel. In total, Wildlife Works today provides over 150 jobs to the local community and brings the benefits of direct carbon financing to more than 100,000 people in the surrounding communities.

Using a grant from the Dutch government and sweat equity from local parents, Wildlife Works built 18 new classrooms for primary school children, who had previously had no books, no desks and often dilapidated classrooms, if any at all. We also created a clean water supply for the schools using an innovative rainwater catchment system and manual rower pump to allow the children to retrieve the water from underground storage tanks.

Before these changes, children in the community had given up on ever being able to go to high school. The year after we built the schools, two students passed their national high school entrance exams and we found them donors to pay their high school tuition fees. These two students - and the fact they made it to high school - have become an inspiration to other students.

 

WHAT IS WILDLIFE WORKS?

Protecting + Forests + Wildlife + Community since 1997.

Wildlife Works is the world's leading REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation), project development and management company with an effective approach to applying innovative market based solutions to the conservation of biodiversity. REDD+ was originated by the United Nations (UN) to help stop the destruction of the world's forests.