African Wildlife Foundation
African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) has a unique approach to conservation in that they accomplish wildlife and land protection by empowering Africa’s people. This strategy incentivizes conservation of national resources by ensuring local communities benefit from wildlife and land protection. AWF supports projects in the areas of wildlife conservation, land and habitat protection, community empowerment, and economic development.
AWF is improving the lives of local people, helping their communities, and saving wildlife simultaneously. They work directly with communities to understand the obstacles they face and provide solutions specific to their needs. These solutions provide jobs, conservation training, educational opportunities, and, ultimately, the ability for people to better their own lives. Since their inception 50 years ago, the dynamic work to bring sustainable change in the areas of education and conservancy sets AWF apart from many in this field.
Grant #1 – March 2014
Empowers Africa made a grant to support the renovation to Manyara Ranch Primary School, a boarding facility that supports the education needs of local Maasai communities in Tanzania. The school currently has 941 students and 19 teachers. African Wildlife Foundation partnered with the Annenberg Foundation, the local school district, and the community to build an entirely new school campus on the perimeter of the ranch. Prior to AWF’s involvement, the school formerly located on Manyara Ranch was dilapidated and lacked electricity and a proper water-distribution system. Additionally, the school itself was located in an important wildlife corridor, which meant that students shared their schoolyard with elephants, lions, and other wildlife, disrupting classes and endangering students. At the Manyara Ranch Primary School, students are now able to study in facilities that include fully equipped classrooms, dormitories, a cafeteria, IT lab, and infirmary. The Empowers Africa grant will assist with the renovation of the school.
Grant #2 – May 2014
Empowers Africa made a grant for general support of AWF’s wildlife, education, and economic development programs associated with African Wildlife Foundation. Since inception, AWF has achieved the following conservation milestones:
- 17,053,535 acres of land under improved conservation management through AWF investment
- 107 community land and public areas conserved with AWF support
- 19 non-tourism enterprise projects opening for business
- 22 tourism enterprise projects opening for business
- 148 Individuals receiving AWF scholarships, internships, and formal training
- 21 wildlife corridors and sites conserved
- 26 national parks and reserves strengthened
- 2,678,699 direct financial benefits disbursed to communities
- 18 AWF species research and conservation projects operating
- 3727 individuals receiving non-formal training
- 80 local institutions receiving significant technical or financial support
- 26 target wildlife populations with verified improvement in conservations status
Grant #3 – May 2015
Empowers Africa made a grant to AWF to supply 71 e-readers to the students at Adisge Primary School. The e-readers are manufactured by Worldreader – a company working across Africa to provide schools with a “library in a box”. The e-readers (Kindles) will be preloaded with 100 books each. Books are selected based on the age of the students, and are relevant to the Africa setting. Worldreader will digitize Ethiopian textbooks to have them pre-downloaded onto the e-readers. With e-readers, students would therefore have access to full suite of material that includes fiction/non-fiction books, textbooks and conservation resources. The e-readers also come with a solar powering device; USB hub allowing multiple readers to be charged at once; LED lighting to allow study during the evening; and adaptors for charging mobile phones.
Grant #4 – January 2016
Empowers Africa continues its support for AWF with a grant to supply e-readers to the students at Adisge Primary School. The e-readers are manufactured by Worldreader – a company working across Africa to provide schools with a “library in a box”. The e-readers (Kindles) will be preloaded with 100 books each. Books are selected based on the age of the students, and are relevant to the Africa setting. Worldreader will digitize Ethiopian textbooks to have them pre-downloaded onto the e-readers. With e-readers, students would therefore have access to full suite of material that includes fiction/non-fiction books, textbooks and conservation resources. Covers, lights, and teacher manuals would also be included in the e-reader package, as well as options to buy additional content at $1 for two titles (one African and one international).
African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), as part of its African Conservation Schools (ASC) program, is currently re-building the Adisge primary school. The new school will include eight classrooms, new bathrooms, teachers’ accommodations, library and kitchen. The existing primary school can currently accommodate grades 1 to 6 and approximately 400 students. The nearest school to this area is 15 miles away in very challenging terrain that is particularly dangerous for girls. The new school will accommodate grades 1 to 8 and a much larger student body – adding grades 7 and 8 will greatly improve access to education and safety. Construction is expected to be complete by the end of 2015. The e-readers will be supplied once the construction is complete at the school.