Through a new partnership between CCB and the Botswana Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (BSPCA) CCB has been lucky enough to receive two (check this) litters of puppies from the BSPCA. These puppies have been rescued and placed in our livestock guarding dog (LGD) programme, where they receive veterinary care and training before being placed with farmers affected by conflict with cheetahs. The last group of puppies we received from BSPCA were placed to individual farmers around the Ghanzi area in October 2017. The dogs are reported to be working very effectively and the farmers are happy with their performances thus far. Thank you to the BSPCA - we are very excited by how these dogs are performing. They are at serving a great purpose, and we are very grateful for your support.
Cheetah Conservation Botswana by virtue of being a member of Botswana Council of Non Governmental Organisations (BOCONGO), walked hand in hand with other civil society organisations by participating in the BOCONGO NGO week on the 23rd – 27th October 2017 and the Annual Stakeholder Forum from the 13th – 15th November in Gaborone. Partners in development, ranging from government officials, the private and parastatal sectors, embassy representatives, civil society organisations and the media, attended these events. Both events presented opportunities for civil society representatives to come together and voice their everyday challenges, meet with potential donors as well as network with other similar groups. Many speakers noted that collaborations are very powerful to deliver results and as such, it is very important for all role players to meet, identify and build capacity, learn from others’ experiences and act together to catalyse change. These events allow NGOs to engage on issues ranging from unemployment and poverty, sustainable resource mobilization, human wildlife conflict and the sustainability of civil society organisations while creating a platform for all participants to network further while identifying areas of collaborations to drive the civil society forward. These forums are very important since civil society forms a huge chunk in developing their countries and having NGOs recognised as active players and partners in development alongside government goes a long way in helping inspire us to attain our goals and move the country forward.
On Sunday the 29th of October 2017, the CCB team embarked on a journey to the Ghanzi District, to conduct participatory planning workshop meetings in the villages of Bere and Kacgae. The objectives of the workshops were to understand the potential opportunities that are available to benefit both communities, challenges they face, what interventions can be put in place in relation to developing their livelihoods, as well as getting to know the role players in the communities and current projects and interventions being undertaken in both villages.
The participatory workshop started at Bere on the 30th- 31st October and proceeded to Kacgae on the 1st - 2nd November. The four days saw CCB staff, together with Professor Kutlwano Molale from the University of Botswana, and the communities unpacking what could lead them to better their livelihoods through various activities. Bere and Kacgae are areas of great significance to cheetah conservation, being located in an important wildlife corridor region between the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park and the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. After all, communities that live alongside wildlife play a critical role in their conservation hence the need to bring them into the mainstream of conservation and developmental. Farmers are less likely to lethally remove carnivores when they understand too well that wildlife is not a threat to their livestock and are also able to see the benefits from conservation efforts. These workshops were an exciting time for us and the communities played a huge role and participated very well in this exercise. Only by working together are we be able to help achieve all of our goals in a sustainable manner to benefit our generations and those who will come after