Many school going children within the northern frontier counties, have little to no knowledge of the drylands extraordinary landscape and wildlife; especially the knowledge about the worlds most endangered antelope, the hirola. In order to improve the wildlife knowledge amongst these children, HCP endeavors to conduct educational school visits at least once a month within the hirola’s natural rangelands. This visits help spark an environmental interest within the young minds by showing them how hirola conservation is of benefit to both wildlife and the local communities.
This month saw our conservation education team head to Fafi Girl’s secondary school a few kilometers from Bura town. Our agenda for the day was make a presentation to the girls of what a hirola is, the threat they are facing and ways that we can help recover their numbers. In our presentation, we also explored how the Somali community has integrated the hirola antelope and other wildlife species in their culture which helped the students better understand the connection of wildlife and anthropogenic aspects surrounding them.
We also did a Q &A with the students on how humans and wildlife can share space; and the girls were more than enthusiastic about the topic which led to a roleplay, where the girls made decisions in small groups on the development of a protected natural area that would act as a menagerie for the hirola antelope to help raise awareness of this endangered species.
At the end of the talk, the girls pledged to start a hirola club within the school to help raise knowledge concerning the hirola. We as HCP are hopeful that this visit will bear fruit and will support the club in whatever capacity we can.