Kasungu-based youth-led community organization NatureKit conducted a five-day workshop at Kasungu National Park in Kasungu, as part of mentoring youths on environmental conservation and imparting knowledge on how they can take care of endangered mammals and the environment.
Speaking during the closing day of the workshop on Friday, NatureKit Programmes Manager Nebart Mtika said the aim of the workshop was to ensure that the youths have knowledge about ecosystem and biodiversity so as they take a leading role in environmental and endangered species conservation issues.
Mtika said through the workshop, the youths were trained on how they can take care of endangered mammals such as elephants, lions, and pangolins. He said the attendees were equipped with knowledge and skills on how they can teach others in schools and other places and be able to provide awareness on environmental and endangered species conservation.
“We believe that this workshop is very important to these youths because it will increase their environmental knowledge levels, promoting favorable environmental attitudes, enforcing environmental awareness, changing environmental behaviors among them and eventually supporting active participation in the solutions of environmental problems,” said Mtika.
Mtika further commended government’s effort in protecting the environment as well as the endangered species giving examples of laws that are being Implemented to support environmental education. He said the only problem is people are not able to understand environmental issues and not take part in environmental conservation issues just as they lack information on why is it important to take care of the environment.
“We are glad that the government is doing enough in protecting the environment as indicated by the laws that are being Implemented. The only problem we have to fill is spreading information about the importance of conserving the environment since many lack this information and others do follow misconceptions. This is why we have NatureKit to fill such gaps as government cannot do everything alone,” he said.
Mtika said Malawi as a country needs to make sure that youths and communities are educated on issues concerning wildlife saying when people are well educated on environmental issues, it will automatically enforce collective actions in conservation.
He said Naturekit’s future goal is to reach out to many schools and ensure that many youths are part of the program.
In his remarks, Patron for Linyangwa Community Day Secondary School Oswald Katenga commended NatureKit for the workshop saying it is very important to the youths particularly students in as far as the endangered species are concerned.
“This is a very important initiative. It is will help students to be aware of the importance of wildlife as well as the endangered species the pangolins, elephants, and lions. This will make students become responsible in conserving the Wildlife and teaching their fellows about it,” said Katenga.
One of the students who attended the workshop, Mervis George who is in form 3 at Linyangwa Community Day Secondary School also commended NatureKit for conducting the workshop saying it has helped him to learn more about how to conserve the wildlife.
“This workshop has helped me to learn more about how to conserve the wildlife and we have seen that wildlife has strong benefits to human beings. I have learnt about how to conserve endangered species and how can I provide awareness to my fellow students at school, teaching them how to conserve the endangered mammals,” said Mervis.
The workshop was made possible through funding from Crowder Messersmith Conservation Fund.