The National Museum of Gede (Kilifi County) hosted the first training course organized by the Mikoko project on mangrove forest conservation and restauration from February 18th to 21st.
This 4-day training aimed at giving the opportunity to local stakeholders working with the mangrove to engage in the project, as its strategy is based on acquisition and dissemination of knowledge.
The training brought together some key stakeholders such as local community leaders and the KFS Ecosystem Conservators from the Kenyan coastal area. The trainers came from a variety of institutions: Egerton University, National Museum of Kenya, Kenya Forest Service (KFS), Kenya Forestry Research Institute, Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute and Kenya Wildlife Service. This training was designed to reinforce capacities of the frontline KFS staff working in mangrove forests and to ensure conservation of the biodiversity resources of mangrove ecosystem through active participation of the community.
After an overview on the mangrove ecosystem and its biodiversity (fauna, flora, fisheries), the participants went on a field trip in Mida Creek to observe the mangrove species, identify them and constitute a herbarium.
The stakeholders then discussed about the different services provided by mangrove forests such as wood furniture, their economic value and the ways that communities can engage in their conservation and restauration. The overall objective was to inform the participants and key stakeholders on what has already been done; the current gaps in the management; and what is needed to be done in the effective conservation of the mangrove ecosystems.
Working groups have been set up to reflect on the expectations regarding the collaborative platform. This exercise was very enriching for the definition of such a tool as well as of these functionalities.
The participants thus benefited from comprehensive information on the mangrove ecosystems and above all from open dialogue, networking and partnerships that were shaped during the training.
This event led, in consultation with the trainers, to the creation of a roadmap for the development of a booklet gathering information from different presentations for wider dissemination within villages and schools of Lamu.