Friends of Association Djibouti Nature unite to ensure long-term sustainability of the organisation
By Shaun Hurrell, Wed, 11/06/2014 - 16:40
Association Djibouti Nature, our Partner in the north-east African country of Djibouti, shows that size doesn’t matter when it comes to effectively working for nature and people.
With an entirely voluntary governing board, only 3 staff and less than 500 members, Association Djibouti Nature is one of the smallest in the Partnership and the first civil society nature organisation to be formed in Djibouti. Yet it takes on the responsibility of Djibouti’s threatened wildlife and habitats, the migratory species that pass through it, and improving people’s livelihoods and environmental awareness.
This includes conserving the Djibouti Francolin Francolinus ochopectus, Critically Endangered and only found in this small, hot country – and nowhere else in the world. It is found on Association Djibouti Nature’s logo however, and they work hard to ensure the bird is found more commonplace in the country’s forests and equally (and relatedly) in people’s hearts.
With such a responsibility, such a small number of staff and an annual budget largely reliant on grants for projects, efficiency and organisation is key. But by being part of the BirdLife International Partnership, a small independent national conservation NGO like Djibouti Nature can draw upon the experience of other independent NGOs all over the world to lift its capacity for conservation work. An organisation is not so small when it has a worldwide Partnership behind it.
BirdLife Partner in Germany, NABU, recently offered their support to their fellow Djiboutian Partner during a 4-day workshop in Djibouti City. The workshop, funded by the BirdLife UNDP-GEF Migratory Soaring Birds project, NABU and Zoo Landau (Germany), assessed and improved Djibouti Nature’s organisational capacity and developed long-term conservation plans. It was like a conservation NGO ‘health-check’ and now Djibouti Nature’s heart, circulation and digestion is better than ever.
“Association Djibouti Nature has approved and adopted a new strategic plan that will be implemented by fresh blood as the organisation is in the process of hiring new staff,”
said Houmed A. Bourhan, Chairperson of Djibouti Nature.
Almost a million migratory birds pass through Djibouti skies each year, making it a very important bottleneck site for migratory soaring birds. After all, nature is shared between countries too. The birds that require German habitat also require Djiboutian habitat to survive, and the wonder of their migration is shared by all people along the Africa – Eurasian Flyway. BirdLife Partners sharing experience and helping each other can help to conserve migratory bird species all along the flyway.
And Djibouti Nature is continuing the process of passing on knowledge: read here about their work with local schools and communities.