Cottars Wildlife Conservation Trust (CWCT) supports the establishment of a 6,000 acre Olderikesi Wildlife Conservancy pilot project on the boundary and key wildlife corridor of the Maasai Mara National Reserve and the Serengeti National Park. CWCT has been actively engaged in the preservation of natural habitats and wildlife in the are and in securing the area from poachers an for the protection of the community.
The Cottar's are in partnership with the Masai community and manage their land on their behalf (for wildlife use) at rates competitive with other economic uses providing alternative livelihood opportunities.
Cottars Camp is neighbored by the Maasai community, a tribe that has so far maintained its traditional way of life. To ensure guests don’t miss out on the intricacies of this vibrant culture, Cottars take them on excursions to various Maasai villages for them to experience Maasai culture first hand. We also provide a market for beadwork and other traditional handicrafts produced by Maasai women as an additional way of preserving Maasai culture and support for development.
Cottar's 1920's Camp maintains close ties to neighboring communities and is keen to address the challenges they face. The CWCT has for many years actively supported the Maasai community's struggle to obtain land tenure resulting in the legal ownership of the Olderkesi Group Ranch in 2010.
We take pride in saying that most of our employees are from the local community, by this we are actively involving them in development. We conduct local clinic visits (dental, ambulance transfers and other general services) which are arranged by Volunteer groups who come through Cottar’s 1920’s camp. We have also built a foot bridge with the Bridging the Gap Africa. The people can now access social amenities unlike before where they had difficulty crossing the Sand River especially during floods. The bridge is now saving an average of six lives a year.
The Cottars Wildlife Conservation Trust( CWCT) will be running a scout operation for wildlife monitoring, anti-poaching and anti-deforestation, and a host of other functions necessary to operate a wildlife conservancy. We have also acquired a gyrocopter to do aerial reconnaissance of activities within the conservancy and wider Mara area to help build a time lapse data base of land use change, wildlife and livestock counts and additional donor funding for this will have a big impact on land use change decisions for the future.
In regards to being members of the Long Run Destinations which practice the 4C’s (Community, Conservation, Culture & Commerce), and prior to the conservancy project, Cottars built the Olpalagilagi Primary School for a total of 200 students, paying teachers salaries and – to keep the children coming to school – we also run a feeding program for them.
Many thanks to all the people and organizations that made efforts to support CWCT. Nothing of value is ever for free, nor can anything sustainable be achieved without ownership and commitmnet by the intended beneficiaries.