Model School Introduces a Culture of Natural Resource Management | WWF Kenya

Model School Introduces a Culture of Natural Resource Management

Posted on
22 March 2018
Illegal logging mainly for firewood and timber is one of the main challenges facing forest conservation in the Mara ecosystem.  In the Mara Basin upper catchment, WWF-Kenya is working with local communities and schools to embrace sustainable practices to conserve the forest through Education for Sustainable Development (ESD).  With the youth forming a large percentage of the Kenyan population, the need to engage them at a young age is vital.  ESD provides a decent platform to breed conservationists with astute knowledge, skills and action competences.

Lasting Impact

WWF-K is working through model schools and community groups in the Mara River upper catchment, in Bomet and Nakuru counties to promote a culture of coexistence with nature.  Through ESD, local communities are now able to understand the linkages between environmental conservation, economic growth, and social development.  
 
In the pilot schools, we have been able to nurture ambassadors who are changing their local communities’ perspective on natural resource management.  For example, at Ambusket Primary School in Nakuru County, each of the 210 students are given 30 tree seedlings annually to plant at their homes.  The school has so far grown 20 acres of forest in its compound through the project.  Gedion Lele, a class 8 student on the other hand has managed to plant more than 100 trees at home.
 
David Chepkwony, the deputy head teacher at the school assert that they were able to tackle water challenge at the school through water harvesting, lessons learnt from ESD.  “Our students can now access clean water throughout the year.  We have also witnessed reduced cases of water-borne disease among our students.” At Mariango Primary School in Bomet County students no longer, walk 3 kilometer to fetch water that would cost the school Ksh 300 daily.
 
In both schools, teachers have noted improved performance and discipline among the student. “Through the project we have been able to integrate practical lessons into the syllabus, therefore improved learning,” said Philip Kiprono, ESD patron at Mariango Primary School. Neighbouring schools and communities are now emulating the model schools.