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WHY GET INVOLVED?

As a charitable trust, Rhino Ark depends on the support of well-wishers who share our vision, mission and passion. Besides financial donations, we therefore invite people to contribute in any other way they can by learning about our work and sharing what they learn with the world.

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WHY DONATE?

Rhino Ark is a charitable trust and our success in developing sustainable solutions to the threats facing mountain forest ecosystems in Kenya is anchored in the support we get from donors. We would like you to be part of our mission and success.

 
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FAQ's
What did it cost to build the Aberdares fence?

The fence has cost approximately KSh800 million (approx. US$10 million) to construct.
The current cost is KSh1.5 million (US$20,000) per kilometre.

How has Rhino Ark managed to raise funds for the Aberdare Fencing Project?

Mainly by the annual world unique Rhino Charge where some cars raise as much as KSh9 million each year. In addition, over the years, various partners and supporters have provided funds for the project. Donors that have provided significant funds include the European Union’s Biodiversity Conservation Programme (BCP), the Safaricom Foundation, Nation Media Group, Eden Wildlife Trust, Kenya Shell/BP, KenGen, Carbacid CO2, AFEW (Giraffe Centre) and AGGREKO, among others.

What is the status of the Aberdare Fence Project?

There are two distinct phases:
(1) Construction
The construction phase of the project was completed on 28 August 2009. It has taken 21 years to build the fence, which is nearly 400 km long.

 

(2) Long Term Maintenance
The project has now shifted into the long-term maintenance phase, which requires upkeep of the physical fence and the entire supporting infrastructure. There are various elements involved in this including:

 

- Construction of Fence Energizer Stations, which house the solar equipment that power the fence and also double up as accommodation for fence scouts. One energizer station covers 10-20 km of fence, depending on the terrain. 12 stations are to be constructed under the maintenance programme with each costing approximately US$ 75,000.

 

- Clearing of the fence line – the fence scouts patrol the fence daily to clear vegetation overgrowth, fallen trees etc. They also carry out any repairs as needed.

Now that the Aberdares fence is complete, how can you ensure it will continue to be effective?

A team of trained fence attendants, called “Fence Scouts” patrol the fence daily to repair and maintain the fence so that it continues to reduce human/wildlife conflict and protect the forest, thereby receiving the continued backing of the neighbouring communities.

What is the status of the rhino in the Aberdares?

They are seen regularly at The Ark and Treetops game lodges in the Salient area of the National Park. However, the threat from poaching is real and tougher measures are needed to provide adequate security.

What can Kenyans do to keep the Aberdares safe for future generations?

Support the Rhino Ark initiative. Details of all our new fund-raising activities are on this website as well as through our bi-annual newsletter ARKive, which is also available for download on this site. Visitors to our offices – in Kenya, UK and USA – are always welcome.

How has Rhino Ark managed to raise funds for the Aberdare Fence Project?

Mainly by the annual, world-unique Rhino Charge event where some individual (out of a maximum of 65) competitor teams have raised as much as KES 12 million in a single year. In addition, over the years, various partners and supporters have provided funds for the project. Donors that have provided significant funds include the European Union’s Biodiversity Conservation Programme (BCP), the Safaricom Foundation, Nation Media Group, Eden Wildlife Trust, Kenya Shell/BP, KenGen, Carbacid CO2, AFEW (Giraffe Centre) and AGGREKO, among others.

What has been achieved in the Aberdares?

- Direct financial commitment by Government since 2006 through funding for fence materials

- Resolved the challenge of human/wildlife conflict and the attendant risks of human injury or death from animal attacks

- General security improved both within and adjacent to the forest

- Improved food security arising from potential 100% offtake of crops by farmers – no losses caused by wildlife

- Improved land values – by up to 300% in forest adjacent farmlands

- Employment – fence scouts recruited from local communities

- Re-plant programmes of indigenous trees inside the fence

- Sustainable projects on farmland outside the fence, including tree nurseries for both indigenous hardwoods and exotic soft woods

Now that the construction of the Aberdare Fence is complete, what next?

Although the construction phase of the Aberdare Fence Project is complete, there is still much to be done to secure the long term sustainable management of the fence. In December 2014, Rhino Ark, Kenya Forest Service and Kenya Wildlife Service jointly operationalized the Aberdare Trust as its founding partners. Its membership comprises the three founding partners plus two representatives of the forest-adjacent communities.

 

The objectives of the Aberdare Trust are to:

- Build, maintain and repair the Fence and promote sustainable management of financial and human resources essential to the Fence maintenance;

- Protect the Fence infrastructure against damage and degradation;

- Maintain and ensure sustenance of the values and protective functions of the Fence;

- Generate funds for investment in the maintenance of the Fence infrastructure;

- Support conservation awareness initiatives of the forest adjacent communities;

- Support programmes aimed at improving livelihoods of the forest adjacent communities;

- Participate in policy making processes affecting the Aberdare ecosystem; and

- Carry out any other activity, including conservation activities, necessary for or incidental to the fulfilment of the objects of the Trust.

 

An endowment fund will also be established. The income accruing from the endowment fund shall be used to maintain and manage the fence.

Rhino Ark shall always remain involved in and committed to conservation of the Aberdare Ecosystem. The Aberdare Fence Project is an example of effective public/private partnership, and it offers a blueprint for mountain forest ecosystem (water tower) conservation.