Garamba, one of Africa’s oldest national parks, sustains an exceptionally high level of biodiversity. Ancient and majestic, this awe-inspiring landscape of dense forest and savannah spans 4,900 km² of the DRC, sharing 200 km of its border with war-torn South Sudan.
Despite being situated in one of the most hostile parts of Africa, Garamba is teeming with life, including 340 species of bird and the critically threatened and last remaining Kordofan giraffe in the DRC. Tragically, militant ivory and bushmeat poachers have all but decimated the natural resources of this World Heritage Site.
If Garamba is to reclaim its former glory, meeting the need for intensive and extensive law enforcement is an imperative task. Training and equipping park rangers to effectively counter militarised poachers, alongside community involvement is the primary focus of African Parks in this region.
We have succeeded in acquiring a helicopter and reopening 100 km of road that was previously under the control of the Lord’s Resistance Army.
A new helicopter, rapid response teams and digital communication systems have helped improve anti-poaching effectiveness.
The construction of new schools and a hospital has provided surrounding communities with access to essential infrastructure.
Livelihood diversification programmes will teach people how to support their families through sustainable agriculture, beekeeping, fish farming and reforestation.
We have revised our law enforcement strategy to provide protection to Garamba’s rangers and vulnerable species, such as Kordofan giraffes and elephants, who are targeted by poachers. Fitting tracking devices will allow us to better monitor and protect these vulnerable animals.