Today, more than 330,000 elephants roam across increasingly fragmented landscapes of East and Southern Africa. More than 60% of their range lies outside of formal protection, exposing them to threats and human-wildlife conflict. Climate change compounds the threat of broken landscapes, with animals like elephants risking their lives and traveling further than ever to seek essential water and food for survival.
Decades of conservation efforts have called on human management and interference, often costly or temporary, but we see a better solution.
Room to Roam is a new and visionary approach to conservation in Africa, with elephants and people leading the way. It’s a vision backed by more than 20 years of science, fieldwork and true engagement with local communities.
We believe every species and every habitat has the ability to bounce back. To survive, elephants need safe routes to roam freely through countries, over borders, at a distance from humans. They need access to healthy habitat for food and water, and the natural space to stabilize and succeed.
Room to Roam doesn’t just help elephants and other wildlife—it also opens new opportunities for local communities to enhance their well-being and co-exist with wildlife. Today, in four key landscapes, we support hundreds of wildlife rangers who help us protect and manage the biodiversity in the landscapes. By working directly with traditional leaders in Africa, we’re empowering local community members to be directly involved in planning and implementing long-term solutions.
four key landscapes
Zimbabwe: Through our conservation partnership with ZimParks, and collaborating with other partners on the ground, we’re helping manage a four-million-hectare landscape in Zimbabwe. This land includes the iconic Hwange National Park and the Panda Masuie Forest Reserve where rescued and rehabilitated orphan elephants are released into a healthy and secure space back in the wild.
Zambia: We’re partners for a climate change resilience agricultural project in the communal areas surrounding Luambe and Lukusuzi national parks in the eastern province of Zambia. Small-scale farming helps communities improve food security and economic livelihoods.
Malawi-Zambia: Our partnerships on the Malawi-Zambia transboundary area help secure 5,366 km² across the Luambe, Lukusuzi and Kasungu National Parks. We support 178 wildlife rangers and provide additional livelihood opportunities to community members surrounding Kasungu.
Kenya: The Amboseli-Tsavo-Kilimanjaro landscape is an important habitat for elephants and other wildlife in the Greater Kilimanjaro Trans-Frontier Conservation Area. Thousands of people live on communal lands in the vicinity as well, making it a critical landscape to promote human-wildlife coexistence. We have close ties with the Olgulului-Ololarashi Group Ranch who have helped guide us in identifying livelihoods projects that support women and children. Together, we created Team Lioness, one of the first all-women ranger units in Kenya. The team protects nearly 150,000 acres of traditional Maasai community lands that encompass Amboseli National Park.
Room to Roam is both ambitious and urgent, and it’s not something we can do alone. It’s about forging partnerships with communities, traditional leaders, governments, private sector actors and other NGOs in an ongoing capacity to reconnect critical landscapes and allow wildlife to flourish. It's about you being inspired to join us on this journey. The future of Africa’s elephants relies on all of us.
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