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November 2009 Travel Zambia 11 People Habitat Habitat Nkani Nkani Archbishop Desmond Tutu met Anne Cooper and Savina Geerinckx of Street Child Africa in July this year at Rotary International's peace symposium in Birmingham UK. Anne and Savina talked to Father Tutu about the plight of street children across sub- Saharan Africa - a subject close to his heart - and drew attention to their two projects in Zambia. With 2009 being the 20th anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the work of Street Child Africa remains more important than ever. This UK- based charity is devoted to helping street children across sub- Saharan Africa. It works in partnership with African agencies on the ground to offer support through counselling, healthcare, education, recreation and income- generating activities. Two projects are currently making a difference in Zambia's Copperbelt: Friends of the Street Children runs outreach programmes, street- corner education and two rehabilitation centres to help street children living in Kitwe; the Rainbow Project supports a dedicated services programme, a drop- in centre and a reintegration centre for street children in Ndola. Find out more at www. streetchildafrica. org. uk ARCHBISHOP SUPPORTS STREET CHILDREN ELTON GONE When a two- day- old orphaned buffalo was rescued by ZAWA scouts near Luambe National Park and taken to Chipembele Wildlife Education Centre, South Luangwa, Steve and Anna Tolan welcomed him with open arms. The baby bovine, christened ' Elton', quickly became imprinted on his humans, following Steve and Anna around house and home. Once weaned, however, he could not simply be abandoned with a wild herd. Thus a plan was hatched to move him to Liuwa Plain National Park as part of an ongoing buffalo translocation project. It took a full year to obtain all the necessary veterinary tests and movement permits. Then, this August, a much larger but very healthy Elton undertook his epic 1500km journey across Zambia. At Liuwa Plain he joined a herd of 19 young buffaloes that are currently being rehabilitated by the Africa Parks Foundation in collaboration with ZAWA. Maggie fi nds pastures new Margaret Mwale - whose cheerful face has greeted safari- goers at Kapani camp for the last fi ve years - is swapping the bush of South Luangwa for the bright lights of Lusaka. " I take with me all the cherished memories of my time at Norman Carr Safaris," says Maggie. " I thoroughly enjoyed my journey with all the wonderful people I met over the years." Maggie will not leave the industry altogether, however, as she will be joining Zambian Ground Handlers ( see p41) in Lusaka to help organise safaris. Meanwhile NCS are delighted to welcome Maggie's replacement, Collins Lungu. Collins brings new talents to the team, having come top in his year at his college course in Travel and Tourism. Courting conservation Isaiah Museto works as the court clerk for Chiawa Chiefdom in the Lower Zambezi region. Isaiah, a lifelong resident of the chiefdom, started work as the local court's messenger 12 years ago and today he deals with many cases. Despite this heavy workload, however, Isaiah has always remained very active in local conservation - and it was no surprise when the community elected him to represent the Chiawa and Mugurameno Zones on the board of the Lower Zambezi Conservation Trust. His studies in agricultural business have served him in good stead, and he is currently studying business administration through Preston Distance Learning Institute. Tragedy struck Isaiah's family last year when his 12- year- old son was killed by a crocodile. This has redoubled his determination to fi nd a sustainable solution to the harsh reality of human/ wildlife confl ict in the area. STEPHEN CUNLIFFE ( x3)

12 Travel Zambia November 2009 BANGWEULU SET TO BECOME ' ZAMBIA'S OKAVANGO' The Bangweulu Swamps is a wetland paradise, home to breeding shoebills and huge herds of endemic black lechwe. Yet for decades the region has suffered from a lack of adequate resources and protection. All that may be about to change, with the creation of Chikuni Community Partnership Park. Stephen Cunliffe spoke to Ian Stevenson of African Parks Network, the new project manager. What is a community partnership park? It is a pioneering concept whereby a protected area belongs to the community rather than the state. It has a joint board, comprising members of the community, the Zambian Wildlife Authority ( ZAWA) and a private sector body. That private sector body - in this case African Parks Network ( APN) - handles day- to- day management. How big is this new protected area? The Chikuni Community Partnership Park covers 2900km2 and the surrounding game management area another 3100km2. We plan to manage it all as a single conservation unit. The CCPP will cater to photographic tourism, while the GMA will earn revenue from controlled trophy hunting. Where does all the money come from? The initial set- up costs are estimated at US$ 1.4 million per year, decreasing by more than a third once the project is up and running. The UNDP and WWF Netherlands have pledged funding for the fi rst three years, while donors and tourism will provide longer- term fi nancial support. Initially, ZAWA, the Community Resource Board ( CRB) and the six local chiefs who have allocated land will share 25% of the revenue. Is much wildlife still left? The black lechwe population has shown incredible resilience in the face of heavy poaching: there are now thought to be over 100,000, along with 1000 tsessebe and an unknown number of sitatunga. Large game has been severely depleted, but a few buffalo, elephant, zebra and sable remain. Bangweulu is also designated an Important Bird Area ( IBA), with such high- profi le species as shoebill and wattled crane among its prolifi c birdlife. Will wildlife populations rebound naturally or will you have to restock? We have laid out a seven- year restocking programme that will begin in 2010 with the release of cheetah. A 20,000ha sanctuary is being mooted to maximise the success of the reintroduced game and to enhance future tourism. Ultimately, we want to see the return of all the region's original wildlife, including lion, leopard, elephant and black rhino. Have you encountered any problems? With 90,000 people living in the area, many of whom rely on subsistence fi shing, our greatest challenge is getting local fi shermen to adopt more sustainable practices - and to understand that fi sh stocks are a fi nite resource. Long fi shing dykes and improvised gill nets are devastating the fi sh populations on which people depend. How will you address these problems? The idea is to use a ' carrot- and- stick' approach. The anti- poaching effort will be expanded, with a force of 24 ZAWA offi cers augmented by 54 newly- trained village scouts. APN will provide local jobs. Villagers will still have access to the park, but there will be increased education and monitoring of fi shing practices. They will also receive revenue via community development projects, such as beekeeping and fi shponds. Other partners, donors and NGOs will help in areas such as education, health, HIV/ AIDs and gender. Where do you see the project ten years from now? African Parks have signed a 20- year management agreement with an option to renew for a further 20 years. Bangweulu should be fi nancially, ecologically and socially sustainable within fi ve to ten years. By then, I would want poaching eradicated, sustainable fi shing practices in place, wildlife populations growing and local support for the CRB. High- profi le tourism operators should be involved, which will generate revenue and bring local benefi ts. If Bangweulu can realise its potential, then I believe it could easily become Zambia's Okavango. Find out more at www. african- parks. org Places Places STEPHEN CUNLIFFE ( x2) Ian Stevenson