In the first years of the ASSETS project three schools were taken up as part of the pilot project. This has been a very successful project with 80 children joining the scheme from these pilot primary schools.
Ultimately, a child attending any of the 36 schools within 5km of the forest and the creek should be able to apply for the scholarship from ASSETS. We have adopted a 4th school this year. Our aim is to adopt one or two schools a year, funds allowing. For the project to fully impact the communities around the forest and the creek, ASSETS depend on sufficient funding.
ASSETS is currently funded by eco-tourism activities, local hotels, other stakeholders and donations. To boost eco-tourism in Arabuko-Sokoke Forest and Mida Creek, a tree house and mangrove walkway and bird hide have been constructed. The construction of the latter has been funded by the Small Grants Programme of the Global Environment Facility (United Nations Development Programme). The profits from the small entrance fee will provide a sustainable source of income for the ASSETS eco-bursary fund. GEF also contributes to the training of forest guides and the wages of the ASSETS Co-ordinator.
The following local hotels are also supporting ASSETS, by providing information about ASSETS and donation boxes for their guests to contribute during their stay.
- TBBC, Watamu
- Aquarius Resorts, Watamu
- Scorpio Villas, Malindi
- Eden Roc, Malindi
- Driftwood Club, Malindi
- Mnarani Club, Kilifi
We are also encouraging hotels to support our bed night scheme, whereby the hotels themselves contribute just US10 cents per guest, per night.
If you would like to visit the area you can stay in any of these hotels.
There are various other concerned organisations active in the forest and creek who are supporting ASSETS. One is the Kipepeo Butterfly Project. This highly effective community conservation programme contributes a small amount to ASSETS for every butterfly pupa which they sell. Even by drinking a soda in the forest, one can contribute to ASSETS. Friends of Arabuko-Sokoke Forest are donating all of the profit from their soda sales to ASSETS.
Friends of ACP - Friends of the Afro-Caribbean Pacific held an event in December 2001 in Brussels, with the Kenyan Ambassador and several VIPs. Enough funds were raised to provide for the bursaries in Term 2, 2002.
ICRAN - International Coral Reef Action Network have made a donation towards the construction of the bird hide, through KWS.
We are also soliciting funds from donor organisations. Please contact us if your organisation is interested in making a donation.
Individual A Rocha supporters and visitors to Watamu have also made personal donations. If you would like to support ASSETS on a personal level, please visit the Action area of the website to donate or find out about visiting the area. Thank you.