The County Government of Baringo, through the Department of Tourism and Wildlife, has developed a means of effective benefit sharing between the local communities and the County Government from revenue collected from Lake Bogoria. The local community has been involved in conservation of Lake Bongori Reserve through various ways among them keeping the surrounding environment clean.
To empower and motivate the community, the Department of Tourism and Wildlife has developed the Baringo County Grants Regulations that provide that 10% of the revenue collected shall be shared among the local communities. The main source of the revenue is from entrance fees to Lake Bogoria Reserve, camping charges, landing fees for helicopters and fees charged for filming in the Reserve.
Ten per cent (10%) of the conservation funds are consolidated annually and distributed as follows: 60% to providing bursaries; 30% to supporting livelihood improvement projects for the local communities living near the boundaries of the reserve and 10% is used for administration costs. This initiative is also aimed at building community partnerships and preventing conflicts. Through the Lake Bogoria Community Clan Committee which is guided by established grants regulations, implementation of the objectives is carried out inclusively. The Committee comprises the Chief Officer of Tourism, Chief Officer of Finance, Chief Warden, one local leaders’ representative, one representative of faith-based organizations, one Youth representative, one women’s representative, one representative of Persons with Disabilities, and the Members of County Assemblies. The local Chief receives all the proposed projects at the locational level, which are then approved by the Chairperson of the Committee, the Warden at Lake Bogoria and the Chief Officer in charge of Tourism as guided by the Grants Regulations.
The benefit sharing carried out from 2015 to date has supported 6,000 bursaries across all levels of education to residents of Baringo County. The rest of the revenue has been used to undertake water provision services through piping, construction of dams, supporting youth and women empowerment activities and establishing community conservancies, which further generate revenue for the local communities. The initiative has also funded projects such as cattle dips, beekeeping, provision of solar panels and construction of dispensaries.