Lake Baringo sunroseTo ensure the environment of Ruko becomes a source of peace and fruitfulness for its residents through proper restoration and management of its resources by its residents.

The Njemps and Pokot people have created Ruko to act as a catalyst for peace between the communities, the environment and the wildlife, and have committed to...

Restoring and protecting a key international ecological area to its original pre-human conflict status

Increasing wildlife monitoring through Community Scout network and radio communication to effectively manage the movements of wildlife, people and livestock
Reintroducing (translocating) wildlife including Baringo giraffe, impala, oryx, eland, gerenuk, zebra, Waterbuck.
Combating soil erosion thus reducing lake siltation
Construct and rehabilitate water pans to conserve water
Replanting indigenous and medicinal plants

Ensuring the communities benefit holistically by protecting their ecosystem, thereby improving their quality of life through poverty reduction and conflict reduction

Restore overgrazed and deforested land by implementing a dry-season Community Grazing Committee
Developing ecologically sound businesses and income-generation projects like bee-keeping and fish farming
Creating schools, training programs and scholarships to provide educational opportunities to community Members

Resolving conflicts between the Njemps and Pokot communities, thus providing security, community development and environmental management

Ensuring participation from both communities on all projects
Equitably distributing income from Conservancy income-generation activities
Enacting a robust management plan ensuring participation amongst youth, elders & women to enhance communication & understanding

Ruko’s RAMSAR Commitment

At the centre of the Ramsar philosophy is the “wise use” concept. The wise use of wetlands is defined as "the maintenance of their ecological character, achieved through the implementation of ecosystem approaches, within the context of sustainable development". "Wise use" therefore has at its heart the conservation and sustainable use of wetlands and their resources, for the benefit of humankind.

I dipped my hand in the tea coloured spray of Lake Baringo, while absent-mindedly scanning the distant hills.  I wasn’t really concerned about crocodile – the speed boat was cruising at a steady 15 knots and although capable of surprising bursts of speed in water – up to 35km/per/hour– I knew even the swiftest crocodile wouldn’t be able to keep up. However, when the boat idled momentarily as we neared Longichoro Island on the eastern shores of Lake Baringo, I hastily withdrew my hand.  A huge croc basked statue-still, molded to a warm boulder the same mottled shade of colour as itself.  While another slipped into the reed beds close by; the ossified scutes of its dinosaur like tail marking a sinuous trail through the water
However, other than crocodile and hippo, I hadn’t seen any wildlife to speak of.  I look forward to returning to Lake Baringo in the not too distant future hopefully to see a ‘tower’ of Rothschild giraffe as well as other antelope roaming safely, protected by the scouts recently recruited by the RCWT.
On our way over to visit Longichoro Island, a wire-tailed swallow dipped its wing in the lapis water rippling the surface like a fishnet stocking.  (This is the core conservation area made up of Njemps and Pokot land).  I had never seen the lake so blue.  Damsel flies with transparent wings outlined in green and black danced over the water, a sign that the lake is healthy. Due to exceptionally heavy rains in the Lake Baringo catchment area, the lake has risen more than a meter in the last twelve months; it hasn’t been this high since 1963.  Not only does the lake look healthier, heavy rainfall has diluted the build up of sedimentation, and the vegetation around the lake is rejuvenating. Does this also mean that the wildlife will benefit and numbers increase?  STORM STANLEY 08