The first of Narok County's female rangers have been deployed at the Olderkesi Conservancy.
The 10 female rangers, hired from among the Maasai community to break cultural barriers in conservation of natural resources, is expected to help fight the rampant illegal charcoal trade.
“This conservancy is about 7,000 acres and in need of more rangers. We have been doing our best, but gender imbalance was weighing us down due to cultural implications,” said Solomon Mpatiany, the conservancy’s warden.
Speaking during the pass-out ceremony of 30 rangers, among them the 10, Mr Mpatiany said women found burning charcoal always threatened to strip to avoid arrest.
Olderkesi is the first organisation to enlist the services of female rangers trained locally, the warden said.
Rael Karpolo, a member of the conservancy, praised the initiative, terming it a milestone.
“We are very happy to see our daughters taking up jobs earlier perceived to be for men only. The conservancy has proved that girls are as important as the boys,” she said.
Sereiya Ndwalla, one of the 10, said she was proud to serve the community as a ranger. “I am very happy to be among the few female rangers. We will show the world that what a man can do, women can do better,” she said.