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Conservancy scoops top biodiversity award

By Robert Kiplagat | October 2nd 2020

Sekenani Village in the world-famous Masai Mara Game Reserve has been awarded this year’s United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Equator Prize 2020. 

The award was presented virtually from the United Nations headquarters in New York, United States, during the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly on September 29.

The 11th Equator Prize Award ceremony honoured 10 indigenous and local communities from across the world in a virtual gala event.

Elated residents followed the event on a huge screen at Oldarpoi camp. They then celebrated the award with traditional Maasai songs and dances.

Nashulai, a wildlife conservancy neighbouring the Masai Mara Game Reserve, was selected from over 600 nominees from 120 countries across the world.

The conservancy was awarded as an outstanding example of an organisation providing local nature-based solutions to climate change and sustainable development.

It is the first conservancy in the Masai Mara owned and governed by the local community.

The conservancy has a 5,000-acre keystone ecosystem land donated by the pastoral community for wildlife conservation.

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It was co-founded by its director Nelson ole Reiyia and Ric Young.

The winners, who were praised for showcasing innovative, nature-based solutions for biodiversity, climate change and development challenges, were each awarded a cash prize of $10,000 (Sh1 million).

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