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Round-up of recent activities at OKKPS

1 July 2023

Second consultation meetings on new national park held in Guinea

The creation of the Pinselli-Soyah-Sabouyah National Park is an integral part of the Outamba-Kilimi-Kuru Hills-Pinselli-Soyah Forest Landscape (OKKPS). With respect to the protection of the OKKPS, the Guinean Office of National Parks and Fauna Reserves (OGPNRF) organised a second round of consultation meetings with the support of the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation (WCF). From 22 to 29 May 2023, meetings were held in the 4 rural communes involved in the project: Soyah, Ouré-Kaba, Maréla and Madina Oula. These meetings are part of the process of obtaining the free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) of the communities living in the future park. The meeting’s aim was to inform local communities about progress towards creating the new protected area and to take note of their fears and expectations about the project. The participants welcomed this approach, pledged to support the WCF and its partners in the creation of the park, and will ensure that it is communicated to the rest of the communities. The consultation meeting brought together 257 participants, including 38 women.

Sierra Leone agents receive training in participatory mapping

Two WCF agents visited Sierra Leone from 4 to 11 June 2023 to train Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary (TCS) team members in the participatory mapping method. Participatory mapping is a process that provides valuable information on how communities use their territories, and consequently on the management of natural resources, with a view to land-use planning. It must be representative of all the members of a community, in other words, of gender, age and different socio-professional categories. Twenty (20) TCS agents received first-hand training in this practice, 10 follow-up theoretical training in Freetown, and 10 practical training in the Outamba Kilimi National Park in the village of Yambere. Agents were further trained in the following methodology: (i) blank sheet mapping, (ii) field data collection, and (iii) satellite image re-transcription. Mapping on a blank sheet of paper enables communities to share their experience of the territory, data collection supports this information and records it (spatially and in a database), and finally, the various items of information are transcribed onto a satellite image. At the end of the mission, two maps were produced, one by a group of women and one by a group of men.

Closing of Club PAN in the Pinselli-Soyah-Sabouyah National Park project, Guinea

The Wild Chimpanzee Foundation (WCF) closed its environmental education “Club PAN” programme in May after delivering all 10 lessons. To mark the occasion, a parents’ day was organised in each of the six participating schools (Diandian, Ouré-Kaba, Farenta, Saférin, Soyah and Soumanyéréya).
During the parents’ days, children gave speeches, performed plays and sang songs about environmental protection, showing their parents the knowledge they had acquired on themes such as chimpanzees, poaching, hygiene and so on. Afterwards, the parents filled in a questionnaire to give their feedback on Club PAN and their expectations for the future. They were asked to share their opinion on what they thought the PAN club had done for their children and what other actions would be needed to protect the local environment. The parents said they would like to see the programme extended to other schools and for supervisors to be given more training.
Four hundred and seventy-six (476) people, including 218 women, took part in the event, and 60 parents responded to the evaluation.