Conservation International Announces New Indigenous Women Fellow From Northern Kenya

As part of improving the influence of women in sustainable management of nature in their communities, Conservation International has selected peace and conservation advocate Josphine Ekiru from the Turkana pastoralist community in North Kenya as an Indigenous Women Fellow.

At age 9, she witnessed firsthand the devastation of inter-communal conflict, and was influenced by that experience to dedicate her life to building peace in her community and beyond. Today, Josephine leads the Peace Program for the Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT), working with over 100 peace ambassadors and pastoralist representatives across 4.5 million hectares of Kenya’s arid northern and eastern regions.

Through her fellowship, Josphine will work with colleagues from Kenyatta University to identify and document the underlying drivers of conflict in pastoralist communities in Northern Kenya. She’ll also document and publish a book about traditional peacebuilding practices through storytelling in pastoralist communities, ensuring this knowledge is passed on to future generations.

A short film produced by Conservation International about Josphine’s peace and conservation work has been selected among the finalists for Best Micro-Film in the Jackson Wild Media Awards 2020 in the US.

Josphine sees peace as an essential ingredient to conservation of wildlife and other natural resources in Northern Kenya and improvement of peoples’ livelihoods. Poachers have historically exploited intercommunal conflicts in the region to target rhinos, elephants and other wildlife.

Learn more about Conservation International’s Indigenous Leaders Conservation Fellowship Program.

Photo credit: NRT