Lake Nakuru Environmental Education Centre is a branch of a non governmental organization, run by a single organization called Wildlife Clubs of Kenya.The mission of the organization is “to provide conservation education to the youths and support wildlife clubs through training, information sharing and advocacy”.
It is funded by the organization’s income generating activities e.g. Membership fees and accommodation and donations from the Government and Non Governmental Organizations.
Hostel- Over 5,000 students and teaching staff for over night stay every year. Several groups and individuals who stop at the centre for a break or a meal after a long drive in the park. Guesthouse- Over 2,500 local and international tourists for overnight stay every year.
The Centre is managed by Wildlife Clubs of Kenya since 1977. It was handed to WCK by Nakuru Wildlife Trust. Previously it was a farm house belonging to the Hopecraft family.
From 1986 to 2000, World Wide Fund for Nature and Wildlife Clubs of Kenya developed educational programmes, strengthened collaboration with local teachers / club patrons through support materials and implementation of activities.
Over the years since inception, the centre has been able to register more than 500 different learning institutions at least once in a year. These institutions are drawn from Riftvalley Province, one of the eight provinces in Kenya.
a) The Education Centre and Hostels are built on 0.82 hectares of land (2 acres). The plot is completely fenced by a chain link with one lockable gate for access.
Buildings. A lecture hall with a library and offices. Three dormitories with a capacity of 60 beds; four bandas with capacity of 14 beds, Kitchen and Dining hall, staff houses, Toilets and Bathrooms.
b) The Guesthouse is built on 0.41 hectares of land (1 acre). The Guesthouse has a main house and two annexes with a capacity of 18 beds and has a staff house. The facilities are available for self catering services. Arrangements can be made to provide meals.
There are four staff members at the centre. A Conservation Education Officer is in charge of the centre.
A Governing Council made up of a Chairman, Vice chairman, Secretary, Trustees and seven to twenty appointed/elected persons control, manage and conduct the affairs of the organisation.
Members are drawn from government departments, donor/ funding agencies, independent organizations, association members and institution clubs.
Programmes and activities for branches/ regions are drawn at the Headquarters. Regional offices draw a calendar of events to include national and regional programmes and activities to be implemented.
The centre is located inside Lake Nakuru National Park. The Park has an area of 188 sq. Kms.
There are two major habitats;
a) LakeNakuru(44sq. kms) a saline lake, a Ramsar site (1991), a bird sanctuary with 70 species of waterfowls including the spectacular lesser flamingoes with a population of 1.5 million. Varieties of algae( blue green algae or Spirulina platensis main food source for aquatic herbivores). Invertebrates Copepods, rotifers source for carnivores. Fish – Tilapia grahami source of food for than 40 species of fish eating birds
b) A terrestrial Habitat (144 Sq. Kms), A successful rhino sanctuary. It has 8 minor habitats, 500 species of flora, 380 species of birds, 50 species of mammals including 4 of the big 5- it lacks the elephants.
Within a radius of 70 kms are prehistoric sites, water falls, crater/ caldera, the great Rift Valley, a national park, a reserve, forest reserves, large farms for tea, wheat and maize.
CEPA – general
Our purpose is to educate, raise awareness and provide training on, about and for environment and wildlife among youth and the general public so that every citizen is guided by reason in making decisions and actions to conserve the environment. We are aiming at having empowered Kenyans with conservation knowledge and skills for sustainability.
Interpretation and major exhibits
Our motto is “Learn to conserve for a better tomorrow”.
We are aiming at a well conserved Environment for the present and future generations.
We use national languages, that is English and Kiswahili and Patrons are allowed to use vernacular languages to communicate with pupils. Electronic media, publications e.g newsletters, magazines, daily newspapers, booklets, posters, fliers are also used
Formal (school and university) learning
The Centre recognizes the important role of the schools and universities and has the following programmes:
Interpretative tours of parks, reserves, prehistoric sites, landscapes, catchment sites.
Outreach programmes for learning institutions which include lectures, video shows, rallies, campaigns, field days.
Competitions in essay writing, art, quiz, drama, poems, songs, debates.
Environmental celebrations e.g. wetland, world environment days.
Environmental projects, camps, excursions, trainings workshops, seminars, information sharing, exchange and interactions between clubs.
Development, production and dissemination of education materials.
Teachers can obtain information on the programmes from all branches of WCK including the Headquarters. Some programme materials are sent direct to member clubs. Programmes are tailored to relevant school curriculum especially in outdoor activities.
Informal (general public) learning
There are guide booklets on various themes including wildlife conservation, trails and also on income generating skills, education trips, workshops, field days, Environmental Day Celebrations, wildlife games, clean ups, tree planting. We use staff and volunteers in our learning programmes.
We are a membership organization drawing members from all learning institutions (Primary, Secondary, Colleges, Universities) Special Institutions, Youth groups, Associate, Honorary individuals/institutions.
The centre regularly welcomes peers, and professional colleagues during training sessions, drawing policy documents. We hold Professional meetings to address specific issues such as climate change, deforestation, degradation of catchments, and education for Sustainable Development.
Training programmes are also organized for specific skills to initiate income generating activities, energy, water and soil, wildlife conservation.
The centre participates in conferences organized by Government Departments, Non Governmental Organisation, relevant religious and community groups.