Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

Mizoga: Distribution in Kenya

© BFF
Born Free Mobile Film Unit team
© BFF
Students at Ndihivyo Primary school in Samburu
© BFF
Part of the crowd at Gayana Rachar, where we had the highest turnout
Summary report April - September 2007

Over the past six months, the Born Free Kenya team has shown Mizoga to over 60,000 rural Kenyans.

The screenings always prove entertaining events, but carry the serious underlying message that the commercial bushmeat trade is decimating Kenya’s wildlife, and threatens the health of its human population.

In April, the team targeted communities bordering Tsavo East and Shimba Hills National Park, where many residents openly admitted to eating bushmeat almost daily, without ever having considered the potential risks to their health. This was of particular concern given that the area has no butcheries, no meat inspector, and therefore no organised supply of domestic meat. Following the screening, there was widespread demand to see more wildlife films.

In June and July the Mobile Film Unit (MFU), generously sponsored by Anne Kent-Taylor, reached Mount Kenya National Park, where it toured for twenty days. Audiences averaged 600 per screening (2,475 being the most to attend one single screening!), thanks in large part to the dedicated help of the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), who kindly allowed use of an extra vehicle to distribute posters and mobilise the most remote villagers so they could see the film. The team spoke to the audience at the end of the film, and learnt that a large proportion of them had eaten elephant, buffalo and impala meat.

The following month, the team took the film to villages around Ruma National Park, where the Born Free supported Youth for Conservation project operates de-snaring activities. Park wildlife populations are recorded to have fallen by 30% in the last two years alone, with indiscriminate snaring to fuel the bushmeat trade being the most prolific culprit. Screenings of Mizoga corresponded with other major events, such as football matches or market days, to attract as many people as possible.

Most recently, the MFU toured the hinterland of the Masai Mara Reserve, followed by visits to the areas surrounding Lakes Naivasha and Nakuru.. As ever, the film was warmly received, and people showed great enthusiasm to learn more about the issues raised. Wanting to know how well audience members had taken on board the film’s messages, the Born Free team, circulated questionnaires. The following select comments are testimony to how effectively Mizoga is communicating the importance of conservation issues to those who live with wildlife every day:

‘I suggest that more game scouts should be employed to help bring down poaching’, farmer, Logorian

‘ The film should be continuously shown to the public so that they can know that poaching is a very bad practice and eating un-inspected meat is very dangerous to health’, Bramwel Warunga, Public Health Officer, Kilgoris district.

‘On my side, I do recommend that those arrested poaching wildlife should be jailed since the benefits derived from wildlife is for the whole country’. Martin Opiyo, student, Rota village.

 ‘The film should be distributed to every part of Kenya’. Jeremia Otieno, farmer, Koduma village.

‘You are doing a good job and continue to educate more people on the threats of eating un-inspected meat and help them to preserve our wildlife for future generations’, student, Mureru Primary School.

‘I will encourage people in my community not to eat or buy un-inspected meat’, Penninah Nkirina, student, Amtubochiu Primary School.

‘The poachers should be arrested and sentenced to jail because they are increasing poverty into our country, by destroying our heritage’, resident, Kapkures.

Born Free Foundation
Broadlands Business Campus, Langhurstwood Road
, Horsham, RH12 4QP, UK - Charity Reg. No. 1070906


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