Karatina University to Partner with NEMA to Restore Wetlands at the Foothills of Mt. Kenya

On 17th May 2024, Karatina University held a consultative meeting with the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) officials at the University Boardroom. In attendance was NEMA Board Member Prof. Charles Ngome, who represented the CEO of the Environmental Authority, the Vice Chancellor Prof. Linus Gitonga, the acting Deputy Vice Chancellors among others. In a significant move towards achieving 15 billion national tree growing initiative, ecosystem restoration and combating climate change, the University will partner with NEMA and other stakeholders. In the partnership, the University will adopt and restore a number of wetlands within its catchment. This collaboration marks a critical step in our commitment to Kenyas’ Wetlands Restoration even as we mark the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration.

From left Dr. Flora Namu the Dean SNRES, the Ag. DVC PFA Prof. Richard Kiai, the VC Prof. Linus M. Gitonga, Prof. Charles Ngome Board Member NEMA, the Ag. DVC ARSA Prof.Hellen Kamiri and the Ag. Registrar P&A Mr. Daniel Murage.

During the productive meeting, representatives from both the University and NEMA discussed the importance of wetlands and the vital role they play in maintaining ecological balance and livelihoods. Recognizing the shared goals and values, both parties agreed to work together to implement effective strategies for wetland conservation and restoration. The parties agreed on the need to anchor the partnership within a framework of collaboration between Karatina University and NEMA, detailing specific projects and initiatives aimed at protecting and rehabilitating wetland ecosystems.

The VC Prof. Linus M. Gitonga poses for a photo with Prof. Charles Ngome the Board Member NEMA

Speaking during the meeting Prof. Charles Ngome, encouraged the University to engage partners in conservation in order to get necessary resources and support for the wetland restoration initiative. The VC Karatina University Prof Linus Gitonga emphasized the importance of community engagement and education to ensure the long-term success of the initiative. Prof. Gitonga indicated that the local communities are the best custodians of the resources, and if supported and guided on how to restore the wetlands, it will be a milestone towards building community resilience to climate change. The VC further stated that the wetland restoration initiative will not only benefit the local community but also provide valuable learning opportunities for students and faculty, fostering a culture of environmental responsibility.

The team poses for a photo in one of the wetlands for the restoration initiative adopted by the institution.

Karatina University is proud to join hands with NEMA and other stakeholders to restore Kenyas’ Wetlands. By working together, the University aim to make a meaningful contribution to the health and resilience of the environment and the local community. The partnership demonstrates the University unwavering commitment to environmental stewardship and sustainable practices, setting a positive example for the community and beyond.