Kenya conservation news update – A birthday gift for Shaba


As Cheli & Peacock prepare to celebrate their 25th plus 1 anniversary this year in October, the company’s founder Stefano Cheli, who will celebrate his own birthday almost on the say day as he started his company nearly 26 years ago published a very special wish for that big day: Help him to re-open the Chaffa Gate at Shaba National Park and restore the ranger post and gate to functionality after it was completely vandalized by invading cattle herders in 2009.

With a few months to go, the company has appealed to their global clientele, the conservation fraternity and the public at large to assist them to achieve that goal, which would assure wider and easier access to the park by safari tourists.

Always quick to recognize a good thing worth supporting, the mail by Charlotte of Cheli & Peacock’s marketing department caught my eye and I am reproducing some of the details she provided me with for onward publication:

From long before Joy’s Camp was built by Cheli & Peacock in 2006, this forgotten, remote and beautiful part of the Samburu eco-system would occasionally be invaded by cattle, goats and camels, especially during drought years.  Being the 3rd year of failed rains, 2009 proved no exception, and what little was left (in terms of Shaba Reserve infrastructure) at the Chaffa Gate was completely abandoned, vandalized and left to rot.


During that year of extreme competition for parched grazing, the Northern Rangelands Trust, at the request of local leaders, started to work with communities surrounding the Shaba Reserve, and the Nakuprat-Gotu Wildlife Conservation Trust was formed.  Continuous dialogue, grazing committees, and donor partnership have now transformed the area, and Joy’s Camp are supporting Nakuprat-Gotu in their efforts to rebuild their community, schools, security and stability.
Stefano’s Birthday Present
Working towards holistic wildlife conservation between Shaba National Reserve and this new conservancy, Cheli & Peacock and NRT have decided to combine efforts to reinstate an effective ranger presence as well as to promote capacity building to aid Shaba in carrying out its operations successfully.


Stefano’s vision is to start strengthening Shaba’s management capacity by reinstating Chaffa Gate itself, as well as reconstructing the two main accommodation blocks, building stone walls around a metal security hut, and installing showers, toilets and a kitchen so that rangers can be fully self-sufficient on site.  A radio mast and solar panel unit for charging mobile phones will also be essential for effective communications in running the reserve.
This proposal has been discussed with Shaba’s Senior Warden, who has pledged to provide rangers from the Kenya Wildlife Service, the Tourist Police Unit and Isiolo County Council.

For 26 years, Cheli & Peacock have been operating in this exceptionally picturesque National Reserve, home to several rare species of wildlife, including gerenuk, reticulated giraffe, Somali ostrich and the endangered Grevy’s zebra. By building Shaba’s capacity, we hope that these species and the reserve will flourish for many years to come.



How to Donate


Together with NRT, Stefano aims to raise $30,000 to launch the holistic wildlife conservation initiative with the reconstruction of Chaffa Gate, which is likely to have a significant impact on Shaba’s wildlife and future.  If you would like to buy him a birthday present this year, please donate to the Cheli & Peacock Community Trust so that we can realise his vision. In order to donate, please contact Chania Frost who will be able to send you the C&P Community Trust bank details.


With great thanks from Stefano, and the rest of Cheli & Peacock, for your support.