Since its inception in 2003, Saruni has identified and nurtured a close connection with the indigenous communities who own the territories where fauna and flora thrive as the key element of its conservation policies. Saruni’s choice to invest in Kenya was in fact influenced by the tradition of community-based tourism in the country and by the cultural element that differentiates a safari experience in Kenya from other safaris in the rest of Africa.
Saruni believes in ethical creation of wealth. This is the way forward for Africa, and for conservation: the protection of wildlife and of nature based on distribution of income and jobs to its stakeholders. This is why we are proud of being among the founding members of Mara North Conservancy (MNC) and of being part of Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT) – two leading community-owned wildlife conservancies in Kenya, which demonstrate the vital connection between communities and conservation, a relationship fueled by tourism.
Mara North Conservancy (MNC)
MNC is a not-for-profit company established in January 2009 as a partnership between eleven member camps and over 800 Maasai landowners. Mara North leased land from individual Maasai landowners, marking the first time that they have received substantial and direct income from wildlife. Together, MNC and the Maasai community are implementing sound land management policies including controlled grazing, holistic management practices, low volume and low impact tourism. Saruni Mara is located inside Mara North Conservancy, while Saruni Wild is located inside adjacent Lemek Conservancy.
Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT)
The Northern Rangelands Trust is a community led, non-governmental organisation that was set up in 2004 in northern Kenya by a coalition of local leaders, politicians and conservation interests. Its mission is to develop resilient community conservancies, which transform people’s lives, secure peace and conserve natural resources. NRT is a community conservancy membership organisation. The 35 member conservancies work across 4.5 million hectares of northern and coastal Kenya. NRT is supporting and empowering communities to develop locally-led governance structures, run peace and security programmes, take the lead in natural resource management, and manage sustainable businesses linked to conservation. The community conservancies are starting to have a significant impact on building peace, improving lives and managing the rangelands, and their success has helped shape new government regulations on establishing, registering and managing community conservancies in Kenya. Saruni is present in 2, important NRT conservancies: Kalama and Sera.