History made as conservancy hires pioneer female rangers

By Ben Leshau

A first batch of ten female rangers have been enlisted at the Olderkesi Conservancy in Narok County in a move that breaks the cultural barrier among the Maasai community.

According to the management of the conservancy, Olderkesi is the first organization to enlist the services of the female rangers in the area.

The female rangers will be involved in the fight against illegal charcoal trade that is rampant at the conservancy.

“This conservancy is about 7,000-acres thus the need to recruit more rangers to man it.We have been doing our best but gender imbalance was weighing down on us since we have been having tough time attempting to arrest the women due to cultural and legal implications,”said Solomon Mpatiany,conservancy’s Warden.

Speaking during the pass out ceremony of 30 rangers at the conservancy he said tackling charcoal burners involving women has been tough since some of the even threaten to strip naked forcing them to abandon the mission setting the culprits free.

Rael Karpolo a female member of the conservancy hailed inclusion of women in the conservation terming it a milestone in ending the continued discrimination against girl child especially in the pastoral community.

“We are very happy today seeing our daughters taking up jobs that were earlier perceived as purely for men.The conservancy has proved that girls are as important as the boys,”she said.
Some of the young women who got the opportunity could not hide their joy of joining the wildlife security sector.

Sereiya Ndwalla,20,who has been dreaming of being a teacher when she was growing up told County Press that she was proud to serve the community as a ranger.

“Though I wanted to be an English/Literature teacher I am very happy that this conservancy offered us the opportunity to be among the few female rangers.With this opportunity we shall show the world that what a man can do,we women can do better,”said Ms Ndwalla.

Another recruit,Hellen Mako,22, echoed sentiments of her colleague on women empowerment saying that with the opportunity,her dream of being a soldier had been fulfilled.

“I have always loved to be an army officer and Iam very happy that my dream has come true in that I will now be protecting my community’s wildlife,”added Ms Mako.

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