Project Description

Wildlife Warriors Teachers Convention

May 31st, 2021

In May, WildlifeDirect launched the first Wildlife Warriors Kids Clubs Teachers Convention for 17 teachers at the Chyulu Wilderness Camp in Kajiado County. The goal of the Teachers Convention was to consolidate the lessons learned from experiences with the existing network of the Wildlife Warrior Kids clubs and lay the groundwork for the expansion of the network in consecutive years.

Our Kids Clubs are led by dedicated teachers, and we noticed that the most successful clubs were led by environmentally experienced teachers. It was clear that the confidence of teachers has the power to transform the students’ attitudes and behaviours. So we gave teachers a chance to be kids for 4 days.

The Teachers Convention brought together 17 teachers from schools in Nairobi, Kajiado and Nakuru Counties. The teachers had the opportunity to explore and learn about different habitats and landscapes that make up the Greater Kilimanjaro – Amboseli ecosystem. They went on game drives, hiked the Chyulu Hills and collected wildlife specimens such as feathers, bones, plants, and insects. They also learnt how to observe nature and annotate sketches through nature journaling, solar energy, water recycling, biofiltration and organic farming. The teachers also used cameras from Mpala Research Centre to document their work through photographs. They had the privilege to engage with experts and scientists including Dr. Paul Musili, the head of the Herbarium at the National Museums of Kenya, Dr. Dino Martins of Mpala Research Centre, Su Kahumbu, a Social Entrepreneur recognised as a pioneer in the organic farming sector in Africa and Pooja Gupta a multimedia artist with a focus on science communication, from India.
By the end of the Teachers Convention, the teachers were impressed at how fun and mind-blowing the event was and promised to encourage environmental stewardship and promote wildlife conservation efforts in their schools and communities as they enlist more members and schools into the Wildlife Warriors Kids program.

The entire Teachers Convention was very useful based on the knowledge and information I gained on wildlife, recycling and organic farming. As time moves by, we will be implementing all this at the school through the Wildlife Warriors Club and even extend it to the community.” – Jonathan Saitoti, Shilishili Primary School, Kajiado.

“Besides being the most venturesome experience I have had, the hike to Chyulu Hills was tremendously educative. Learning about diversified types of plants around Kenya was quite amazing. The entire convention was absolutely great. Every day was a learning day and an eye-opener. In our Wildlife Warriors Club basket, we got a lot of activities to do and new ideas on how to do them differently. Planting more trees in our school and writing a club’s journal are our priorities.” – Nancy Nuguna, Mirera Primary School, Nakuru.
The Teachers Convention was funded by the National Geographic Society. We are also grateful to the Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust, Dr. Mohanjeet Brar & Gamewatchers Safaris, Mpala Research Centre, Vivid Features, local and international donors. A big thank you to Dr. Dino J Martins, Dr. Paul Musili, Pooja Gupta, Su Kahumbu, Wilson Ole Kasaine, Luca Belpietro, Parashi Ntanin, Samson Parashina, Peter Laitakwan, staff and guides at the Chyulu Wilderness Camp, Gamewatchers Safaris guides, the schools and teachers who participated and all our staff.

Teachers during the outdoor classroom session learning about insects with Dr. Dino Martins via Zoom © Paula Kahumbu

Teachers with experts, guides and the WildlifeDirect team hiking the Chyulu Hills © Paula Kahumbu

Dr. Paul Musili with plant specimen during the Chyulu Hills hike  © Paula Kahumbu

Teacher John Paul expressing his excitement of getting to the top of the hill  © Paula Kahumbu

Teacher Job Naimoi nature journaling in the field. Right

© Paula Kahumbu

Teachers learning Plant Pressing in the field 

© Paula Kahumbu

Teacher Nancy Njuguna connecting with nature by hugging a tree © Paula Kahumbu