"The key to saving African wildlife is African people."
African Wildlife Conservation
Who can best protect Africa's amazing wildlife? The best answer is African people.
People won't care about wildlife conservation when they're excluded from the process. And who can blame them? Why would anyone living alongside dangerous animals support their protection there aren't assurances of safety or benefits?
Though many Africans don't see wildlife regularly, those living near animals such as lions and elephants understandably view them as ruinous pests. Bottom line: next to mitigating human-wildlife conflict, the African people must be the primary beneficiaries of any conservation initiative if Africa's wildlife is to survive. Too, they must also be given the chance to steward them.
It is my hope that Africa would become a place where her people's needs are met, and where they can wholly benefit from their natural heritage. Only then will Africa's wildlife endure. Only then will it exist in perpetuity. Conservationists must heed the voices of the African people--wildlife's best hope for survival.