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Dear friends,

Welcome to the latest edition of the Wildlife Tracks newsletter! We are thrilled to share the latest updates from our Wildlife Warriors Kids Field Lab, filmmaking activities and all round month of love for our nature and wildlife. From exciting animal sightings to immersive virtual reality and planetarium experiences, we have been busy exploring the wonders of the natural world and beyond.

This month alone, we have observed a diverse array of wildlife at our field lab located right next to the breathtaking Nairobi National Park, including Black and White Rhinos, Giraffes, Buffalo, Common Zebras, and Warthogs, among many others. We have also seen birds such as Red firefinch, Red cheeked cordon blue, Long tail fiscal, Black kite, Tawny Eagle, Grey capped social weavers, Superb starlings, Ostrich and many more.

Join us as we take a deep dive into the incredible world of wildlife and discover the magic of science, technology, and conservation.

NEWF Congress 2023

Pauline Kyalo and Paula Kahumbu from WildlifeDirect and Filmmaker Kristina Obame from Gabon
We are thrilled to announce that we were recently invited to attend the NEWF (Nature, Environment, Wildlife Filmmakers) Congress 2023 in Durban, South Africa, which took place between the 24th-27th February. The event was a huge success, with many passionate individuals and organizations gathering to discuss the theme of #AfricaRefocused.

We were honored to be a part of the conversation, which highlighted the importance of telling African stories around nature and wildlife. As we engaged with other attendees, we were reminded of the significant role we all play in promoting conservation and inspiring a love for nature. It was inspiring to see so many like-minded individuals and organizations come together to make a positive difference.

Our biggest takeaway from the event was the recognition that we can all contribute to protecting our planet and its precious resources in immeasurable ways when we band together. We are excited to continue playing our part in raising awareness about the importance of preserving nature and wildlife, and we look forward to future opportunities to collaborate with others who share our passion for the environment.

Virtual Reality Experience

Students from Emakoko Primary School experiencing Virtual Reality 
One of the most exciting experiences we have had recently is the Virtual Reality Experience brought to us by the team from Meridian Treehouse. With the help of virtual reality headsets, our children and teachers were able to immerse themselves in the wild world of wildlife, with up-close encounters with wild lions in Luangwa Valley and a breathtaking flight on the backs of American Bald Eagles.

The reactions of our young visitors were truly priceless, with many expressing pure awe and wonder at the virtual world they had just experienced. One student exclaimed, "I felt like I was going to fall off!" while another shouted "There's some magic here!" We believe that such experiences are crucial in bringing the reality of the natural world to children who may never have the opportunity to see these creatures up close and personal.

By engaging their senses and emotions in this way, we hope to inspire the next generation of wildlife warriors to become advocates for conservation and environmental stewardship.

Wild Planetarium Experience

Kids from St Joseph OVC Upendo Programme learning about stars and galaxies
A picture of our solar system displayed inside the planetarium
The most recent wild activity at the Wildlife Warriors Kids Field Lab was the star party, which featured an incredible planetarium experience for our visiting kids. At first, the students were puzzled by the inflated dome structure. We heard them asking "Is it a jumping castle? A playhouse?"

But as soon as they entered the planetarium, they were transported on a breathtaking journey through space, visiting distant galaxies, planets, and stars. They even had the opportunity to explore the mysteries of a black hole, and gaze at the wonders of the night sky through telescopes.

Many parents were thrilled with the educational value of the experience, with one father remarking, "Our children have never had such an educational experience." One student even wrote a thank-you note to the Travelling Telescope team, saying "Dear Travelling Telescope, you were so cool." We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Ronald, Susan, Silvana, and Chu of the Travelling Telescope for bringing this unforgettable planetarium experience to our Wildlife Warriors Kids Field Lab.
Entrepreneurial Kids

We are thrilled to see our young Wildlife Warriors taking conservation into their own hands, as evidenced by the recent project launched by two boys from the Emakoko area, Castro and his cousin Larry. Their project, "Super Loofahs," aims to plant and produce loofahs as eco-friendly alternatives for scrubbing bodies and utensils, in order to reduce the use of non-biodegradable materials in their environment.

The boys have even made a film about their project and submitted it to National Geographic's Slingshot Challenge, showcasing their ingenuity and passion for conservation. We couldn't be prouder of our young entrepreneurs and their commitment to making a positive impact on the world around them. We wish Castro and Larry the best of luck in their endeavors and will continue to cheer them on every step of the way! With more and more young people like them taking the lead in conservation, we are confident that the future of our planet is in good hands. 

Click here to watch their video using the password tml3

Meet Maxxie, Our Resident Frog!
At the Wildlife Warriors Kids Field Lab, our young cubs have made a new friend - a delightful waterproof foam nesting tree frog named Maxxie.

This species of Chromantis is known for its remarkable ability to withstand dry weather, and can often be found perched on thorn trees in bustling areas. One of the most fascinating things about Maxxie is its ability to change color for camouflage, allowing it to blend seamlessly into its surroundings and reduce water loss. Our kids have been absolutely fascinated by this tiny creature, learning all about its unique adaptations and habitat, and taking great care to ensure that Maxxie is well-fed and comfortable in his new home. It's a true wonder of nature to be able to make such close connections with the wildlife around us, and we are grateful for the opportunity to foster a love and appreciation for all creatures great and small.

Growing Our Partnerships

Left: WildlifeDirect meets with Dr. George Njagi from Wildlife Clubs of Kenya
Right: WildlifeDirect meets with Wild Scouts Bureau representatives
Join Us In The #NaturePositiveChallenge
Our kids from Kenya, Tanzania and Rwanda in various activities during
World Wildlife Day
To celebrate this year's World Wildlife Day, WildlifeDirect is pleased to announce the #NaturePositiveChallenge Call for Conservation Proposals for all schools participating in the Nature Positive Kids Outreach Program in East Africa. Winning schools will each receive $500 to implement their conservation projects. 

In the spirit of this year's WWD2023 theme: Partnerships for Conservations, we are extending an invitation to organizations, corporates and individuals to partner with us.

Join us in our Nature Positive Challenge by matching our $500 grant to support schools in promoting nature-positive activities that are solution-based and promote conservation actions.

Happy #WorldWildlifeDay2023! 
Please Donate HERE
With very kind wishes,

Dr. Paula Kahumbu
CEO, WildlifeDirect
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WildlifeDirect, Karen Connection, Karen Road. P.O. Box 24467 -00502 Nairobi, Kenya
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