hope in a conservation battlefield|Garamba – DR Congo
Staff and community members from Garamba National Park walk home in their Sunday best from the local church at Garamba NP headquarters in Nagero.,DRC.
Earlier this year I did an assignment for African Parks in Garamba National Park in The Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Garamba is one of Africa’s oldest parks, encompassing an area of around 2,000 sq miles it shares a border with South Sudan.
Critically endangered Kordofan Giraffe. African Parks have counted 48 remaining in the DRC and they reside in Garamba National Park alone.
Garamba National Park, DRC.
The park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with a unique bio diversity and home to a plethora of exotic species including forest elephants, hippos and the DRC’s last population of Kordafan Giraffe numbering about 55.
Garamba has had a turbulent history making it a dangerous place for both wildlife and humans to live. For years, militias from the DRC, CAR and South Sudan have terrorized surrounding villages and poached endangered wildlife to feed soldiers and fund armies.
In 2016 African Parks had a security overhaul and successfully reduced risks. The parks surrounding villages and wildlife received crucial protection and a higher level of safety was enforced. But sadly it is still too dangerous for tourists to travel and remains one of the toughest places in the world to be a ranger.
Remarkably, Garamba houses a committed team of scientists, humanitarians, rangers, researchers, medics, pilots, security experts and professionals who live and work for African Parks at their headquarters in Nagero, Garamba National Park.