July 2023 was a month of excitement and cultural enrichment at the River Lokichar Wildlife Conservancy. Founder Peter Lokwang and his team hosted several notable events, welcoming esteemed guests, government officials, and cultural troupes. From the Queens of Karamoja photoshoot to peace talks bridging communities, the conservancy witnessed a vibrant array of activities that showcased the region’s rich heritage and natural beauty.
1. The Queens of Karamoja Photoshoot and Afterparty
Early in July, the conservancy came alive with the enchanting Queens of Karamoja photoshoot. Dressed in traditional attire, the queens exuded the pride and grace of their Karimojong heritage. Following the photoshoot, an afterparty filled with music, dance, and celebration created an unforgettable atmosphere.
2. UWA Staff Retreat and Cultural Preparations
River Lokichar played host to the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) staff from Mt Elgon, Pian Upe, and Bokora. The retreat offered a space for important discussions, including cultural preparations. The conservancy aims to embrace cultural diversity and showcase the Karimojong way of life during their upcoming events.
3. Minister of State for Tourism’s Special Visit
A significant highlight of the month was the forthcoming visit of the Minister of State for Tourism. The state visit signifies the conservancy’s growing recognition and importance in promoting ecotourism in the region.
4. River Nangolol Apolon Campsites and Forest Camping Tours
Nature enthusiasts were treated to a unique experience at the River Nangolol Apolon campsites. Surrounded by lush forests, visitors enjoyed a serene camping experience while exploring the conservancy’s natural wonders.
5. River Lokichar Cultural and Ecotourism Troupe
The River Lokichar Cultural and Ecotourism Troupe took center stage during the week, entertaining Turkana visitors and dignitaries. The troupe’s captivating performances showcased the cultural vibrancy of the region, leaving guests enthralled.
6. Building Bridges of Peace
River Lokichar played a vital role in promoting peace and unity between the Jie and Bokora communities. After peace talks, a bull roasting ceremony symbolized the harmonious coexistence fostered by the conservancy.
7. Joint Kraal Concept
The River Lokichar Village and Kraal Concept were further enriched when a joint kraal of approximately 28,000 cows gathered at the conservancy. This shared grazing ground demonstrated the importance of community cooperation for sustainable development.
8. Elders Meeting and Future Plans
In a significant step towards community involvement, the conservancy hosted The Elders Meeting organized by KCE. Attendees discussed the need for increased resources and support for greater development in the area. A follow-up meeting was scheduled for August 5th, 2023.
The events at River Lokichar Wildlife Conservancy in July 2023 showcased a celebration of culture, nature, and harmony. Through diverse activities and meaningful engagements, the conservancy solidified its position as a bastion of cultural preservation and ecotourism in the region. With the support of the local community, esteemed guests, and government agencies, River Lokichar continues to be a beacon of hope for sustainable development and cultural exchange.