In the heart of Laikipia County lies Mukogodo Forest, a sanctuary of natural beauty spanning an impressive 30,189 hectares. At the forefront of its preservation is the ILMAMUSI Mukogodo Forest Association, a registered Community Forest Association (CFA) dedicated to managing the Mukogodo Forest Reserve in collaboration with the Kenya Forest Service.
In a bid to enhance visibility and communication regarding their conservation efforts, ILMAMUSI CFA orchestrated the second edition of the “Walk Wild” event. This ambitious endeavor brought together a diverse group of 600 participants, including men, youth, and women, to champion awareness for landscape restoration in the Mukogodo ecosystem while fostering a call for peace and unity.
Working hand in hand with partners such as the Food and Agricultire Organization (FAO) of the UN, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, Laikipia Wildlife Forum (LWF), Laikipia Conservancies Association (LCA), and others, ILMAMUSI shaped an event not only to raise awareness on forest conservation but also as a strategic marketing platform to generate funds to support Forest and general Landscape Restoration within the Mukogodo Ecosystem.
The Walk Wild event served as a vibrant canvas, painting the key thematic areas of FOLAREP, the looming threats of climate change, and the ambitious 15 billion tree-growing national campaign. Every step echoed a call for environmental consciousness.
Beyond a simple walk, this event aimed to cultivate partnerships and mobilize resources crucial for the ongoing conservation activities championed by ILMAMUSI CFA. Collaborations with the above-named stakeholders showcased the power of unity in environmental stewardship.
More than a physical journey, the event sought to strengthen community engagements, promoting a sense of oneness and peaceful coexistence within Mukogodo forest and its surrounding landscapes.
The event was planned by ILMAMUSI CFA in partnership with a dedicated committee made up of key stakeholders namely; LWF, Borana Conservancy, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, County Government of Laikipia and IMPACT Kenya. Invitations and online registrations started a month prior, creating anticipation for the 10-kilometer walk from Sarara camp, winding through Ololorten and Nandungoro at the heart of the forest, concluding at Lokusero Secondary School.
The walk, flagged off by the area Member of Parliament (MP) and the County Forest Conservator (CFC) at Sarara camp, commenced at 1100hrs, guiding participants through the lush forest terrain. Safety was a priority, with water supply points and security teams deployed strategically along the route, ensuring a harmonious journey.
When the clock struck 1200hrs, the walk reached its culmination at Lokusero Secondary School, marking not just the end of a physical journey but a symbolic stride towards a greener, more sustainable future for Mukogodo Forest.
The support extended by partners such as FAO, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, LCA, LWF and others played a pivotal role in the event’s success. Their contributions ranged from technical support to mobilization efforts, emphasizing the collective commitment to environmental conservation.
The “Walk Wild” event, orchestrated by ILMAMUSI CFA, stands as a testament to the potential unlocked when communities and organizations unite for a common cause. It not only highlighted the beauty of Mukogodo Forest but also underscored the urgency of collective efforts in preserving our natural heritage.
As the echoes of footsteps in Mukogodo Forest fade, the resonating call to action lingers. The success of this event is not just in the steps taken but in the lasting impact it leaves on the ecosystem and the communities it serves. The journey continues, and the strides made during the “Walk Wild” event are an invitation for all to join hands and stride towards a sustainable and harmonious future.