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Dear friends,

We are delighted to welcome you to our latest newsletter, where we bring you the highlights of an eventful month of March. We marked this year’s World Wildlife Day through numerous activities including wildlife documentary screenings, river cleanups and visits to protected conservation areas. 

March also marked the return of our much-loved #TeamSayari episodes to our television screens  and screenings at our conservation hubs in Kilifi County and at the Wildlife Warriors Kids Field Lab. It was heartwarming to see children from different schools engage in nature based activities.

We are also overjoyed to report that after a long drought, the skies have opened and finally the much waited rainfall has fallen across the country. Our bordering dry river Mbagathi is now flowing with water, bringing the much-needed relief to our wildlife and nearby communities.

World Wildlife Day At The Field Lab

Wildlife Warrior Kids Clean-Up the Mbagathi River banks and environs
On March 4, 2023, we celebrated the World Wildlife Day, by bringing  together children from Emakoko for a cleanup event at Mbagathi River. The river forms the southern boundary between the Wildlife Warriors Kids Field Lab and the Nairobi National Park. It also a source of water for people, livestock and wildlife from the area. It was a wonderful opportunity for these young conservationists to make a difference and learn about environmental sustainability.
During the cleanup event, the children collected litter that was deposited along the banks of the river. They also learned about how to sort the trash and throw it away safely. The hands-on experience allowed the learners to understand the importance of keeping our waterways clean and the impact of litter on the environment and wildlife
Puppet show after the clean-up exercise
After the cleanup was completed, the children were treated to a puppet show and learnt about the importance of trees, growing trees, caring for them and conservation of wildlife. The puppet show was a fun and engaging way to educate the children about environmental issues and how to care for the planet.

The entire event presented a wonderful day filled with fun and games. The children left the Field Lab feeling inspired and excited to make a meaningful difference in their communities.

Monitoring & Evaluation: Baseline Survey 

Moses Mbeya, our M&E officer, during the enumerators training ahead of the survey
Our Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) team is conducting a baseline survey across East Africa to understand children’s knowledge, attitude, and behavior towards nature, environment, and wildlife. This survey will enable us to measure the behavior change of these young conservationists after they watch the Team Sayari episodes that WildlifeDirect is currently screening at the conservation hubs and which will soon be available at select schools participating in the Nature Positive Kids Outreach program..

The purpose of this survey is to establish a sense of what the children already know about the environment, nature and wildlife. By doing so, we will be able to identify any changes in behavior and understanding of environmental issues after they watch the episodes. This survey will also help us to design and implement effective conservation interventions in the future.

Screening #TeamSayari With SHOFCO Schools

Team Sayari debuted the second season on March 4, 2023 on National Geographic Wild TV channel followed by Saturday screenings at the Wildlife Warriors Field Lab. During the month WildlifeDirect hosted 50 children from SHOFCO Kibera School for Girls and 50 children from SHOFCO Mathare School for Girls at the  Wildlife Warriors Field Lab. The girls from Mathare watched Team Sayari episode on Life Under the Sea and were captivated by conservation divers and the magical life under the water.

The girls were captivated by the episode and later enjoyed a nature walk around the Field Lab where they also learnt about the different plants, trees, habitats and wildlife found around the  area.
SHOFCO Mathare School of Girls visits the Wildlife Warriors Field Lab
For SHOFCO Kibera School for Girls, the children watched an episode titled Speed and learnt about Cheetahs - The fastest land animal on Earth! Through this episode, the students also learned about the conservation efforts put into protecting cheetahs and their habitats.

We believe that providing access to conservation education can have a profound impact on young minds, inspiring a lifelong love for nature and conservation. We are delighted to see that #TeamSayari is leaving a lasting impression on the hearts of these children and we look forward to continue bringing educational content to more schools and communities in Africa.
Dr. Paula Kahumbu Featured on Financial Times

Our CEO, Dr. Paula Kahumbu was recently recognized by the Financial Times for her outstanding work in conservation. Her dedication and contributions to the sector has made her a true force to be reckoned with, and this feature is a testament to her passion and hard work. We are extremely proud of her accomplishments and grateful for her leadership in this important area. This recognition is well-deserved, and we look forward to seeing her continue to make a positive impact on the world.

Here's a short excerpt from the article, "For the conservationist-turned-storyteller, the fact that many people are not familiar with her country’s wildlife is one of the biggest threats. “My job is to just bring sanity to the protection of our natural heritage,” Kahumbu says. “My purpose is not just to be a scientist, my purpose is really to do conservation through education, through innovation, through storytelling. As a conservation scientist, you’re only producing scientific articles that are only read by other scientists. But when you are on National Geographic or Disney that inspires people, educates them to care about nature,” Kahumbu says."

To read the full article, click here.

Dr. Paula was also a speaker at #FTClimateCapital 2023 in London - An event that brings together climate leaders, politicians, business leaders, and financiers to drive real action towards cutting through complexity and jargon and ensuring organizations move from commitments to tangible results. 

An excerpt from her keynote read - "The future of Africa’s wild lands is central to the future of climate all over the world. It’s imperative we work together to change the narrative, bring media into positioning African experts, African stories at the same level as past stories."

We are proud to have her represent us and share her insights and perspectives as an expert African conservationist and filmmaker making a valuable contribution to the discussions and initiatives aimed at driving real progress towards a more sustainable future.

The Rains Are Back!
We are absolutely thrilled to report that we have finally received rainfall at our Wildlife Warriors Kids Field lab after experiencing a long period of drought. The area was previously dry and arid, and the river Mbagathi, which separates us from the Nairobi National Park, did not have a single drop of water.

The arrival of the much-needed rain has brought life and rejuvenation to the area, transforming the landscape into a lush and green oasis one day at a time. We are overjoyed to see the river now flowing with water, providing a source of sustenance for the wildlife that inhabit this area.

The change in scenery has been truly remarkable, and we are grateful for this vital replenishment of our natural resources. This rainfall is a reminder of the critical role that nature plays in our lives, and we will continue to do everything we can to ensure that our environment is protected for future generations to enjoy.
Thankyou for Supporting The #NaturePositiveChallenge
We would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to all our partners who supported us in the #NaturePositiveChallenge call for conservation proposals. Thanks to their generosity, we are able to provide schools participating in our Nature Positive Kids Outreach Program in East Africa with an opportunity to showcase their conservation ideas and win $500 to implement them.

We value the immense support we have received from different organizations, corporates, and individuals who have partnered with us. As we celebrate this year's WWD2023 theme of Partnerships for Conservation, we recognize and appreciate the efforts of our #TeamSayari's partners; The Walt Disney Company, WildlifeDirect, The U.S. Department Of State, and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). We also appreciate Dr. Manu Chandaria for his great support. Your contributions have enabled us to make a positive impact on the environment and inspire the next generation of conservationists.

We warmly welcome and appreciate any additional contributions from our partners who would like to support our education and outreach programs.
Please Donate HERE
With very kind wishes,

Dr. Paula Kahumbu
CEO, WildlifeDirect
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