Over 200 trainees graduated during the Kenya Wildlife Service Training Institute (KWSTI) located in Naivasha on June 9, 2017 at a colourful ceremony presided over by KWS Director General Mr. Kitili Mbathi.
The graduands attained Certificates and Diplomas in the following courses: Aquaculture, Nature Interpretation and Tour Administration, Community Wildlife Management, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Wildlife Management, Environmental Management, and Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences.
While congratulating the graduands for their hard work culminating in their award of certificates and Diplomas, Mr. Mbathi praised the institute’s administration led by Dr. Charles Musyoki for imparting conservation and outreach knowledge through its market-drive courses.
The Director General said wildlife is a key pillar to the development of the nation adding, “Wildlife is critical to the future of the world as more and species become endangered and ecosystems degraded due to human encroachment”.
He said wildlife has immense socio-economic value for the people of Kenya and the world at large. “Tourism is expected to drive and sustain a double digit economic growth in Kenya”, Mr. Mbathi said.
KWS is committed to educating communities to address rising cases of human-wildlife conflict, the Director General said, noting communities need to be educated on how to coexist with wild animals.
“ You have learnt that the majority of our wildlife are domiciled outside protected areas, and I trust that as you join other Kenyans outside this institute, you will be our good ambassadors in educating communities wherever you will be”, Mr. Mbathi told the graduands.
He said human-wildlife conflicts can only be effectively dealt with through enhanced and consistent conservation education and outreach initiatives.