The core mandate of the State Department for Wildlife (SDW) is provision of strategic policy, direction and leadership in wildlife conservation and management in Kenya as provided for under Executive Order No. 1 of June 2018 on re-organization of the Government of the Republic of Kenya.
The State Department for Wildlife is expected to provide conservation leadership and policy directions such as:
1. Wildlife Conservation and Protection Policy
2. Protection of Wildlife Heritage
3. Management of National Parks, Reserves and Marine Parks
4. Wildlife Conservation Training and Research
5. Wildlife Conservation and Protection, Education and Awareness
6. Wildlife Biodiversity Management and Protection
7. Collaboration with Wildlife Clubs of Kenya
8. Management of Wildlife Dispersal Areas in collaboration with partners
The State Department for Wildlife oversees the following State Corporations:
1. Kenya Wildlife Service
2. Wildlife Research and Training Institute
3. Wildlife Clubs of Kenya
The State Department for Wildlife offers these services to the public;
- Perform research , protection and conservation of wildlife.
- Sensitization of the public on wildlife conservation.
- Support community -based wildlife initiatives programs.
- Job creation.
- Provide incentives to support individuals, communities and other stakeholders to invest in wildlife conservation and management.
- Encourage private bequeaths of land and property for purposes of wildlife conservation.
- Establishes a strategy for mitigating human wildlife conflict.
- Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS)
- State Department for Wildlife
- Community based organizations (CB0s)
- Wildlife Research Training Institute (WRTI)
Kenya’s wildlife policy is embodied in the Sessional Paper No. 3 of 1975 entitled “A Statement on Future Wildlife Management Policy in Kenya”. This Policy was a radical departure from the previous approach to wildlife conservation, which emphasized protected areas.
Wildlife policy May 2007: This Policy proposes a broad range of measures and actions responding to the wildlife conservation challenges. It seeks to balance the needs of the people of Kenya with opportunities for sustainable wildlife conservation and management countrywide.
Kenyan Constitution 2010: Marked an important milestone in Natural resource management and in particular wildlife policy in Kenya, this called for review and alignment of all existing policies and laws to align with the new constitution.
Draft Wildlife Policy, 8 July 2011: The goal of this Policy is to provide a framework for conserving, in perpetuity, Kenya’s rich diversity of species, habitats and ecosystems for the wellbeing of its people and the global community
Wildlife Conservation and Management Act 2013: This governs wildlife conservation and management in Kenya. This law is enforced primarily by the Kenya Wildlife Service with support from the police and other government agencies.
Wildlife policy 2017 Draft: Stated that:
Wildlife resource will be managed as key component of complex ecological system functions and ecological processes.
Wildlife conservation and Management shall be encouraged and organized as a form of land us on public, community and private land.
Where benefits accrue from wildlife conservation and management the people of Kenya will share this equitability.
Sessional paper No.1 of 2020 on Wildlife Policy: This Policy spelt out a new policy of integrated wildlife conservation and management based on local participation. This policy paved way for the integration of wildlife management, and, recognition of the participation of both communities and the private sector in wildlife conservation and management
POTENTIAL INVESTMENT AREAS AND AREAS OF COLLABORATION
INVESTMENT AREAS ARE:
Eco-lodges: Constructed of semi-permanent solid walls of natural materials that blend well with the environment, minimum concrete is recommended. Usual amenities are provided.
Lodges: These are accommodation facilities developed of solid walls, constructed up to one-level on permanent, reinforced concrete foundation. Guests are provided with usual amenities including restaurants, bars, swimming pools, and Gift shop. Lodges may only be constructed in High Use Zones of any Park or Reserve.
Luxury Tent Camps: This is one level facility, preferably on wooden raised decks constructed of canvas and other materials that blend with the environment. Amenities include: Swimming pools, plunge pools, gift shop and a parking area are permissible.
Cottages: They are typically Self-catering accommodation facilities with separated or joined individual visitor units. Constructed of steel reinforced concrete foundation with permanent solid walls. A reception area, communal kitchen and dining area is provided under one roof. Minimum guest services such as laundry, catering and beverages provided and only essential staff is accommodated on site.
Star-bed Camps: Erected on raised wooden sleeping platforms that are partially covered with a thatched roof. Movable beds located on these platforms can either be directly under the stars or under the roof, as weather permits.
Private Sector Stakeholders as Key Conservancy Partners: a variety of partnership models ranging from inter-conservancy collaboration, inter-community partnerships, and private sector coalitions with the communities.
Government and Conservation Organizations as Conservancy Enablers: National and county government and conservation non-governmental organizations are identified as key actors and essential partners to the conservancy movement in Kenya
Community-based conservancy: This conservancies promote healthy Ecosystems that support wildlife livestock and human needs to overcome poverty hunger and diseases and further provide community with sensitization on importance of wildlife conservation.
State department of Tourism: collectively promote and market the Community as a Single Tourist Destination while conserving and ensuring sustainable utilization of wildlife and other tourist sites.
Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Forestry: Has a mission to facilitate good governance in the protection, restoration, conservation, development and management of the environment and natural resources for equitable and sustainable development thus conserving wildlife habitat.
Partnership with National Youth Service: A meeting on partnership between the State Department of Wildlife and National Youth Service discussed on creating a wildlife corridor and dispersal area within the National Youth Service land in Kirimon Laikipia County.