With the effects of the pandemic carried forward and the devastating drought that became prolonged toward the end of 2021, it was indeed a challenging year. But with your support and generosity we have been able to make meaningful positive impact with communities. From the time Wild Heart Kenya was founded in 2017, communities have been at the heart of everything that we do and we are always working toward reducing wildlife conflicts, nature regeneration and mitigating the effects of the climate crisis.
Above from left: Winnie Cheche - Projects Co-ordinator, Fazeela Mubarak - Co-Founder, Sumaiya Harunany - Projects Cordinator & Joyce Koech - Events Co-ordinator.
Nature regeneration is a huge part of our commitment especially in areas that have been desecrated by pollution and development. We are working with a local grassroots group Blue Earth Org to rewild and regenerate a mangrove area that had been deforested. Mangroves are important as they protect islands from storms, absorb upto 10x more carbon than terrestrial forest (so very important in mitigating climate change!) are homes to crabs, baby sharks, feeding places for turtles, breeding spots for fish- basically thriving biodiversity hotspots and provide income for communities.
As Wild Heart Kenya we have planted over 700 mangroves and we look forward to planting more! All our seedlings are sourced from fishermen from the local community whose income had been affected by the pandemic. This means they now have an income from a green source! We look forward to planting more!
After last year's successful sanitary pad project for girls in rural areas, we continued to support vulnerable girls and young women. As the effects of the pandemic slowly started easing, parents were faced with another problem - drought. This meant that crops dried out and parents are less able to afford sanitary pads for their girls. This leads to them missing out on school and vital lessons.
Your support means that girls don't miss out on schools and they can have their period safely, with dignity and hygiene.
So far we have reached out to 700 girls with more than half of them being repeat beneficiaries.
We look forward to continue supporting them!
From top left: Children from a school bordering Tsavo East National Park hold placards about the enviroment that they made with their environment teacher, Mr. James, Children Take part on the strike and our Head of Programs - Tiju Aziz overlooks a tree planted with children.
As the climate changes, the communities we work with are at the forefront of this crisis. The unpredictable weather patterns have seen them bear the brunt from dried out crops to increase in conflicts from wildlife. This has meant loss of income for most and especially the youth who face an unpredictable future.
We at Wild Heart Kenya are committed to educating children about these effects and working on measures to mitigate the effects. In March and Sept 2021 we partnered with Fridays For Future Kenya so that children who have been affected by the climate crisis participated in the climate strikes with other young people all over the world. The main aim was to ensure their voices were heard. We worked with Imani School, which borders the Tsavo East National Park and the children going to this school have been affected by the climate crisis.
Over 30 children took part and they ended the day by planting a tree as a symbol of their commitment to protect the environment!
In 2021, Kenya faced a devastating drought. In the Tsavos, the water pans dried out and the rains had failed once again. We worked with local volunteers to ensure water was delivered. This meant that animals would not go out wandering into nearby communities and therefore reduced incidences of human-wildlife conflicts. The rains finally came on the first week of December giving much relief to communities and wildlife.
However, the rain patterns remain unpredictable and we continue to monitor the situation and work on sustainable long term solutions.
On the first week of December as we monitored the water pans in Tsavo East, a community scout informed us of a lady who had been injured by a buffalo and was in Moi Hospital in Voi receiving treatment. We went to visit her where she told us of what had happened. During the drought, she was walking her 4 year old boy to school when a buffalo who had left its wild habitat came out and gored her. His horn went through her thigh and raptured her bladder.
Fatma's family survive on less then a dollar a day. She has a small farm which she tends to and sadly because of the unpredictable weather patterns, her crops had dried out. Her husband, Thomas, does odd jobs which earn him about $1 a day and kept them going.
When we met her, her bill had gone up to $300. Also, due to her injuries, she needed specialised treatment which could only be done at Kenyatta Hospital in Nairobi. We quickly worked with our donors and mobilized funds for her treatment. She was taken to Nairobi where she got treated.
After over 50 days, Fatma was finally home. We visited her as she went for her routine dressing and we look forward to her settling in with her family.
From Fatma and us, thank you for supporting us, and let us do all our part in ensuring climate justice for all!
As communities reel with the effects of climate change, we remain committed to advocate for a better policies especially the ones that affect the most vulnerable. We do this by peaceful, direct action.
In 2021, our Co-founder Fazeela Mubarak was part of a documentary by Talia Woodin featuring the voices and experiences of various youth activists and organisers from around the world; the film looks at the true legacy and impacts of the United Nations Annual Conference on Climate Change, the Conference Of the Parties, or COP.
COP-out’ is a grassroots, collaborative project, created by and with activists with the aim of platforming the most crucial voices in conversations around the Climate Crisis.
Be sure to check out when the next live screening is at Lush's Youtube channel!
We thank you for your unwavering support, and a special shout out to all our volunteers who are always working hard behind the clock to ensure our work runs smoothly!.
Be sure to follow us on our socials - Instagram, Facebook & Twitter to keep up to date with our latest news.
Together we have made such a positive impact in 2021. Wishing you all a very happy wild year!
Brandy and Fazeela.