Environmental News from Across Africa (4)

Last month in June, DHL, (www.dpDHL.com), the world’s leading international express delivery provider, completed another landmark transportation project with the delivery of a black rhino from its birthplace in the Czech Republic to its natural homeland in Tanzania. Three-year-old female Eliska was moved to a natural park in Tanzania as part of an ongoing conservation project run by the George Adamson Wildlife Preservation Trust, aimed at helping endangered animal populations to grow and prosper in their natural habitat.

“The delivery of Eliska to Tanzania continues a proud tradition at DHL Express of supporting international animal conservation efforts,” said Ken Allen, CEO, DHL Express. “We were very excited to have the opportunity to transport this beautiful animal home to Africa and to play our part in these critical efforts to help revive endangered Eastern black rhino populations. Complex projects like this, where failure is simply not an option, also allow us to showcase the power of the DHL global network and the expertise of our certified international specialists.”

Eliska’s move was overseen by an international DHL team, comprising around 40 specialists inareas ranging from ground transportation and aviation tocustoms clearance and certification across more than five countries. The 900 kilogram female was transferred from ZOO Dvur Kralove in the Czech Republic, where she was born in 2012, tothe main DHL European Hub in Leipzig, Germany. She was then loaded on to a dedicated 28-ton Boeing 757-200 freighter, specially modified for animal transport, and flown more than 6,500 kilometers directly to Kilimanjaro Airport in Tanzania, from where she was transferred by truck to her new home. Along the way, she was accompanied and monitored by a team of support staff, including Dr. Pete Morkel, one of the world’s leading black rhino veterinarians. Five containers of food and water supplies were also loaded for the journey.

“We were delighted that DHL was able to support us with this project, as we were only prepared to entrust Eliska to partners who could absolutely guarantee a safe and seamless move,” said Tony Fitzjohn OBE, Field Director, The George Adamson Wildlife Preservation Trust. “Having the support of anexperienced team of international transport specialists allowed us to focus without any distraction on the comfort and well-being of Eliska and to ensure that she had the best possible introduction to her new life in Africa.”

Eastern black rhinos are one of the most endangered mammal groups, with large-scale poaching in the late 20th century leading to a significant decline in black rhino populations in Africa. There are estimated to be about 800 in the world today. ZOO Dvur Kralove, where Eliska was born, has a strong record of breeding Eastern black rhinos, with 43 calves of the species born to date.

“Eliska’s departure is a bitter-sweet moment for ZOO Dvur Kralove. We are sorry to say goodbye to one of our much-loved animals, but at the same time, we are extremely gratified to have played a part in this important conservation project and excited to see how she adapts to her natural habitat,” said Přemysl Rabas, Statutory Director of ZOO Dvur Kralove. “The build-up to her move to Tanzania has involved years of careful preparation, and we are sure that – with DHL – sheis in the right hands for the journey.”

DHL has supported a number of major conservation projects in recent years, including the delivery of three black rhinos from the U.K. to Tanzania in 2012 and the delivery of two rare Sumatran tigers from Australia and the U.S. to London Zoo in the same year as part of a breeding program. A 2013 project to transfer two giant pandas from China to a Belgian sanctuary resulted in the ‘perfect delivery’ in June 2016, when the female gave birth to a panda cub.

Hennie Heymans, CEO, DHL Express Sub Saharan Africa adds, “As facilitators of global trade, it’s fantastic that we can use our logistics expertise for such an important conservation project, and we trust that Eliska will flourish in her new home in Africa.”

This was a press release from DHL

Wednesday, 20 July 2016 00:00

Innovating Solutions for Africa's Health

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NAIROBI, Kenya -- The healthymagination Mother and Child Programme — launched in March 2016 by GE (www.GE.com)  and Santa Clara University’s Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship (www.SCU.edu/MillerCenter)  to address maternal and child mortality by supporting African social entrepreneurs operating in the health sector — has taken the first big step toward achieving its objective: selecting the first group of social enterprises that will receive training and mentoring.

After a rigorous evaluation process, 17 social entrepreneurs from Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Uganda and Zambia were selected to be in the programme’s first cohort and are currently attending a three-day, in-person workshop in Nairobi, Kenya. This kick-off event packs core business lessons into a powerful three-day event facilitated by senior-level Miller Center mentors and GE business leaders. It is designed to help the social entrepreneurs acquire business fundamentals, improve their strategic thought processes, and articulate a business plan that demonstrates impact, growth and long-term financial sustainability.

“Social innovations and entrepreneurs in the health sector have in recent years yielded sustainable solutions to some of the world’s biggest health challenges,” said Jay Ireland, GE Africa president and CEO. “It is for this reason that the healthymagination Mother and Child programme is focusing on training and mentoring social entrepreneurs working on increasing the quality, access and affordability of maternal and child health in sub-Saharan Africa, thereby enabling more women and children to experience better health.”

Thane Kreiner, Ph.D., executive director, Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship said, “Despite major gains made globally in maternal and child mortality, the levels in sub-Saharan Africa remain unacceptably high. This GE and Miller Center collaboration takes an innovative and highly practical approach to  combatting this challenge, by providing African social entrepreneurs with the skills and resources they need to expand the positive impact of their interventions.”

“We are excited to work with our first cohort of social entrepreneurs to improve mother and child care in Sub-Saharan Africa.  This program builds on GE’s strong track record in bringing innovation to emerging markets while increasing positive health outcomes,” said Robert Wells, executive director of strategy for GE’s healthymagination commitment.

The initial workshop will be followed by a six-month, online accelerator programme, where mentorship will be provided by high-profile Silicon Valley-based executives who have themselves undergone mentorship training by Miller Center. This accelerator and mentorship programme will culminate in a “Premier Pitch” event in Africa where the 17 participants will present their respective enterprises to an audience of potential investors.  

This training and mentoring that blends Silicon Valley entrepreneurial principles with venture impact investing utilizes Miller Center’s Global Social Benefit Institute (GSBI®) methodology, which has been proven and refined through 12 years of working with more than 570 social enterprises worldwide. Participants will also be introduced to GE’s portfolio of products; hence they will gain specialized support and training on technologies and resources for the maternal and child health sector.

In alphabetical order, here are the social enterprises selected for the healthymagination Mother & Child programme—along with the countries in which they operate and the social entrepreneurs leading them: Access Afya (Kenya; Dr. Daphne Ngunjiri); ayzh, (Kenya; Habib Anwar and Zubaida Bai); Health-E-Net (Kenya; Pratap Kumar); Hewa Tele (Kenya; Steve Alred Adudans); LifeNet International (Uganda, Burundi and DRC; Stefanie Weiland); Live Well Social Enterprise Business (Zambia; Charles Kalonga); Lwala Community Alliance (Kenya; Julius Mbeya and Ash Lauren Rogers); Nurture Africa (Uganda; Brian Iredale); Outreach Medical Services (Nigeria; Dr. Segun Ebitanmi); Peach Health (Ghana; Cobby Amoah); PurpleSource Healthcare (Nigeria; Olufemi Sunmonu); SaferMom (Nigeria; Adeloye Olanrewaju); Telemed Medical Services (Ethiopia; Yohans Emiru); The Shanti Uganda Society (Uganda; Natalie Angell-Besseling); Tulivu Imaging (Kenya; Matthew Rehrig); and Village Hopecore International (Kenya; Anne Gildea). 

Press Release from GE

When Britons delivered a verdict that their country should stomp out of the European Union, the UK’s market sneezed and the world caught a cold. Sort of. Although this cold hasn’t quite reached African countries, analysts say that this may happen. If it does, then Africa’s fight against climate change may be one of the casualties.

Jean Devlin, the Director of Africa Analysis, at Control Risks explains, “Ultimately, the impact of Brexit for the continent will be defined by the global agenda in the coming months. As political risk has increased in the traditionally safe havens of Europe and with the election in the US later this year, there is less scope for international cooperation to address issues of particular relevance to African countries such as peace and security issues, development, impacts of climate change.”

Britain may indeed be too busy worrying about its new identity to focus much attention on Africa’s climate change adaptation struggles.

Monday, 09 May 2016 00:00

Kenya Gets Climate Change Law

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The Kenya Climate Change Bill 2014 has finally made a vital transition into an Act of the Parliament thanks to President Kenyatta’s assent to the Bill on 6th May.

It is telling that that the Press Release announcing this historic achievement was titled, ‘Revenue allocation Bill signed into law,’ almost as if the signing of the Climate Change Bill was an afterthought. This observation is not meant to cast aspersions to the crafters of the Press Release. Rather it is meant to spotlight the indifferent and dismissive attitude that most people adopt when it comes to climate change. We cannot afford to accommodate this attitude in the implementation of this historic Act.

Kudos to President Kenyatta for assenting to the Bill. Two big pats on the back to the Kenya Climate Change Working Group which steered this process pat and Hon. Ottichilo the Member of Parliament for Emuhaya who midwifed the Bill in parliament during its first dispensation.

Clause 3 (1) of this Act forcefully states that, ‘This Act shall be applied for the development, management, implementation and regulation of mechanisms to enhance climate change resilience and low carbon development for the sustainable development of Kenya.’

Climate change resilience and low carbon development are the key phrases in this clause. It is time for Kenya to roll up its sleeves and completely up its game in these two areas.