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Mitigating Natural Resource Based Conflict in the Pastoral Communities of Northern Kenya

N.R.T.T. will support improved market access for sustainable livelihoods reinforcing the region’s role as a center for peace and prosperity

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Northern Rangeland Trust Trading (NRTT) will support cooperative development and market access for improved income; we will also train, young herders in rangeland restoration, veterinary services and wildlife conflict mitigation—reinforcing the region’s role as the center for peace and prosperity in Africa’s arid lands.

Explain your idea

In Northern Kenya, low literacy levels and sparse government services hamper economic growth. Poverty rates are high, and semi arid, degraded landscapes constantly challenge the livelihoods of a largely pastoralist population. This leaves humans, livestock and wildlife in direct competition for two primary natural resources: grazing and water. At present, the livestock of Northern Kenya faces distinct challenges making it to the market place: deficient fodder, disease outbreaks, a lack of formal tracking systems and a fragmented value chain. This eliminates a natural economic incentive to conserve and protect grazing land driving natural resource based conflict with devastating consequences. Northern Rangelands Trust Trading (NRTT), the social enterprise of the Northern Rangeland Trust (NRT), is uniquely positioned to tackle these challenges providing value for the restoration and protection of natural capital. Through community conservancy governance structures established over the last decade by the Northern Rangeland Trust (NRT), Northern Rangelands Trust Trading (NRTT) will invest in training herders in rangeland restoration and vet services. Livestock participating in the program will be tracked with livestock microchips, an innovative new technology being piloted in the region, cutting down on livestock theft and maintaining record of vet services. As livestock conditions improve, Northern Rangelands Trust Trading (NRTT) will then facilitate entry into the market. This will restore the environment, empowering herders through training, jobs and financial literacy, and build the capacity of rural communities to lift themselves out of poverty.

Who Benefits?

The direct beneficiaries will be the pastoral communities and wildlife subsiding off the natural environment in Northern Kenya. Though the indirect beneficiaries include downstream users utilizing the region’s natural capital, such as carbon capture and fresh water.

How is your idea unique?

By implementing a holistic model of landscape restoration incentivized by market access for livestock in improved condition, Northern Rangeland Trust Trading will tackle the challenges of natural resource based conflict, food security and sustainable livelihoods in Northern Kenya. This solution is unique in three ways: • We are tackling the challenges facing the landscape at their root utilizing the governance structures of community conservancies that have been developed in partnership over the last decade. These structures provide the greatest tool in addressing disease outbreaks, rangeland degradation, market inefficiencies and livestock banditry in the long term. • We are uniquely positioned as a social enterprise supporting a non profit organization to address a fragmented value chain. • We are employing microchips, an innovative new technology, to tag and track cattle involved in the program cutting down on stock theft and ensuring participation toward rangeland improvement.

Idea Proposal Stage

  • Piloting: I have started to implement my solution as a whole with a first set of real users.

Tell us more about you

The Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT) was established in 2004. Its mission is to develop resilient community conservancies which transform people’s lives, secure peace and conserve natural resources. By the end of 2014, there were 33 conservancies under the NRT umbrella, covering over 32,000 km2. These conservancies are managed by democratically elected boards, and are now legally recognized institutions. NRT raises funds for these conservancies, provides advice on how to manage affairs, and facilitates a wide range of training – from governance and security, to wildlife monitoring and peace building. As the number of conservancies grew, so did the need for a more commercial arm of NRT – one that could support conservancies to earn revenue from their own, sustainable activities and reduce reliance on donor funding. NRT Trading was established as a limited company in 2014, and now supports the development of direct commercial revenue to communities in three main areas – livestock, beads, and tourism. The success of these programmes is now paving the way for communities to explore other emerging markets, such as fish, mangos and silk.

Expertise in sector

  • 5-7 years

Organization Filing Status

  • Yes, we are a registered non-profit.
  • Yes, we are a registered social enterprise.


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