Social Ecosystems


Combatting Wildlife Crime (CWC) projects


Funding: USDOS, INL and WWF
Partners: SRT
Starting date: October 2017 to August 2022
Title: Combatting Wildlife Trafficking in Namibia
Contact person: Peter Erb This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Location: Field-based, southern Kunene and Erongo regions.


  1. Anti-Poaching and Counter-Trafficking Support: Support MET and NAMPOL nationally to implement on-the-ground anti-poaching interventions to deter and capture poachers.
  2. Investigations: Support MET and NAMPOL case officers to more effectively investigate poaching cases, penetrate trafficking syndicates, to effect better arrests and prepare better dockets for court.  (WWF managed component)
  3. Prosecutions: Support prosecutors to more effectively prosecute poachers and members of criminal syndicates. (WWF managed component)
  4. Customs: Support Namibian Customs to improve interception rates for ivory, rhino horn, and other illegal wildlife products being smuggled through Customs.
  5. Rhino Custodians:  Incentivize and support the active engagement of Namibia's Rhino Custodians.
  6. Support the NGOSS: Support the NGOs to guide civil society engagement in the fight against wildlife crime, promote lesson learning between LE practitioners, and leverage additional non-US Government funding.
  7. Support to Blue Rhino Task Team: Support Blue Rhino to further solidify the strategic partnership between the Intelligence and Investigations Unit (IIU) of MET and the Protected Resource Division (PRD) of NAMPOL and other law enforcement agencies.  (WWF managed component)


Funding: USAID, INL and WWF
Partners: SRT
Starting date: September 2021 until 31 August 2023
Title: Combatting Wildlife Trafficking in Namibia
Contact person: Peter Erb perb@nnf,
Location: Field-based, southern Kunene and Erongo regions.


  1. Support MET to implement on-the-ground anti-poaching interventions to detect, prevent, and reduce poaching activity in four operational areas (Etosha National Park, northwest communal areas, central and custodian, Kavango/Zambezi)
  2. Improve aerial support for MET and NAMPOL case officers
  3. Increase the capacity of Namibian law enforcement and customs officials to investigate transnational wildlife cases
  4. Empower national and regional wildlife law enforcement to build a sustainable foundation to better prevent, detect, and investigate wildlife crime through specialized training and assistance

CD-86 and CD-87

Funding: USDOS, INL and WWF
Partners: SRT
Starting date: October 2017 to August 2022
Title: Combatting Wildlife Crime in Namibia and the Kavango-Zambezi Area Project, USAID - AID-674-A-17-00002
Contact person: Peter Erb This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Location: Field-based, Kavango-Zambezi Regions.

CD-86 Objectives:

  1. The Flow and Linkage Between Viable Wildlife Populations and Community Benefits Strengthened (Benefits)
  2. Community Governance and Leadership of CBOs in Wildlife Management and Stewardship Enhanced (Governance and Stewardship)
  3. Community Pride in Wildlife Built (Awareness and Pride)

Outcome: Community Benefits, Stewardship, and Engagement in Combatting Wildlife Crime Improved (or Increased)

CD-87 Objectives:

  1. New approaches, tools, and technologies for field-based LE activities leveraged
  2. Anti-poaching and LE efforts strengthened and improved
  3. Information sharing among PA managers, LE officials, communities, and private sector supported

Outcome: Anti-Poaching and Surveillance Capacity and Collaboration Among Communities, Private Sector, and PA and LE Officials Strengthened

Completed Projects

GIZ PoliFund - Partnership Against Poaching and Illegal Wildlife Trade

Funding: Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit

Starting date: 1 April 2019 – 1 March 2021
Title: Developing an Integrated Wildlife Crime Communications Platform
Contact person: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Location: Namibia

Project Background

Wildlife crime is ongoing in Namibia, but more recently there have been some major efforts to strengthen the response to this scourge. These efforts have focused on prevention, response, and follow-up but comparatively little has progressed around communications. Although it is accepted that poaching has decreased slightly in 2016 and 2017 no figures are readily available, nor is there any coordinated communication on arrests, prosecutions, and sentences handed down to poachers. This is in itself part of the challenge that the project aims to address. In addition, whilst there has been a concurrent increase in coverage of poaching issues in the national and international press, there has been little in the way of any concerted media outreach campaign targeting identified segments of the population. Furthermore, despite increased coverage, the media in Namibia do not comprehensively or consistently report environmental topics with the aim to interpret the technical and or political complexities for the public to easily understand and take informed actions for environmental protection in Namibia. 

Objectives: The project aims at building up public awareness of the issues related to wildlife crime by developing a national feeling of pride and resilience around key species and Namibia's wildlife populations in general. The intervention will focus primarily on two critical voices and the creation of a neutral platform to drive more coherent communications through the Ministry of Environment and Tourism and rural communities. 

The overall outcome should be a sustainable coalition that drives public awareness, targeted advocacy, and peer pressure to help change knowledge, attitudes, and behavior towards wildlife crime and support conservation efforts. 


Funding: United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through the WWF Namibia
Starting date: 2017
Title: Combating wildlife crime in Erongo and Southern Kunene regions of Namibia
Contact person: info@nnf,
Location: Field-based, southern Kunene and Erongo regions.


Project Background
Rhino poaching in the South Kunene and Erongo regions of Namibia, home to the only truly wild Black Rhino population outside of protected areas in the world, has increased over the years.

This project provides support to community game guards working in communal conservancies in terms of anti-poaching and wildlife crime mitigation efforts. This support is closely coordinated with ongoing anti-poaching and law enforcement efforts as well as new support mechanisms that have commenced in 2017/18. In this respect, project staff play a facilitating and coordinating role between target communities, the natural resource working group (NRWG), other NGOs, and MET working in the target area. Additionally, the project advances iconic species conservation with a focus on rhino conservation and monitoring. Through the development of diversified tourism activities around rhino tracking, payment schemes for elephant sightings, and exploration of associated payments for ecosystem services in this unique landscape.
At the community level, the promotion of active reporting of suspicious activities and development and pursuit of the appreciative inquiry concept with conservancies will raise awareness of wildlife and ecosystem values. This process will ultimately enhance community pride and resilience.
Project outcomes will be in line with the Namibian Government’s newly developed ‘National Strategy to Combat Wildlife Crime’. The NNF will pilot an open innovation approach, and the experience of dealing with poaching against a background of high inequality and rising deprivation will be widely documented and made available to organizations in other countries through various CBNRM fora.



Funding: United States Agency for International Development (USAID) 
Starting date: 1 July 2019 – 1 August 2020
Title: Strengthening Blue Corridors and Building Pride to Combat Wildlife Crime
Contact person: info@nnf,
Location: Along the NE Rivers – Zambezi and Chobe Rivers

Project Background

Component One: The transboundary rivers of KAZA are the lifeline of the region for both people and wildlife. They are also conduits for movement. Previous projects on fisheries management, implemented by the NNF and its partners, revealed the nature and extent of the shared fish resources. In Namibia, a decline in river fisheries over the last 3-5 years was concealed by the highly productive ephemeral Lake Liambezi that received inflow. The highly productive lake encouraged the commercialization of fishery in the region and opened trade routes into the copper belt of Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Nationals of all three countries developed sophisticated business relationships. As the productivity of Lake Liambezi declined and the lake dried up, the paucity of fish in the rivers resulted in more destructive fishing methods to meet the demand and maintain business operations. This led to the collapse of river fisheries, heavily impacting the livelihoods of people and communities who have traditionally fished the rivers.

Objective One: To strengthen riverine communities, a critical line of defense against wildlife crime and illegal wildlife trafficking, we intend to (1) encourage the implementation of fish guards; (2) build capacity among fish guards to manage their fishing resources; (3) increase the contribution of fishery communities towards joint patrolling and law enforcement along transboundary rivers by training fish guards in law enforcement and anti-poaching operations and (4) work together with the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources (MFMR), Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET - responsible for wildlife crime), the Natural Resource Protection Unit of the Namibian Police (NAMPOL).


Component Two: Exchanging information, learning from other countries, and developing best practices can be an important factor contributing to sustainable development, environmental protection, and climate change adaptation. Namibia is well known for its conservation efforts that resulted in increasing wildlife numbers. However, it is also important to highlight the challenges the country is facing. At the same time, the rewards for illegal behavior are hard to counter using monetary means but the value of pride and dignity can overcome these challenges. 

Objective Two: Building community pride for wildlife. Creating a documentary: 

The main objective of the documentary is to document Namibian conservation success stories by Namibians, about Namibians, and for a Namibian audience. The documentary will follow communities and custodians of the Namibian environment and look at success stories as well as actions taken to combat wildlife crime. This is about communicating stories to have an impact.


Rhino conservation activities in Namibia

Funding: WWF, Protect African Rhinos

Parnter: MET
Dates: 01/04/2017 - 30/09/2018



The project aimed at supporting the Ministry of Environment and Tourism in securing and managing funds, targeted toward rhino conservation. 

Namibia has experienced a sharp increase in rhino poaching since 2014, and due to this increase in rhino poaching, MET embarked on a dehorning campaign in August 2014, whereby all major rhino populations are being dehorned biannually.  


In conjunction with dehorning, all rhinos were notched, microchipped and DNA profiled. In addition, there was also an urgent need to translocate rhinos between populations, out of high-risk areas, and focused on establishing new populations. 

Project activities included:

- Rhino dehorning

- Rhino translocations

- Rhino block count

Natural Ecosystems and Biodiversity


Introduce Mechanisms to Restore Degraded components of the ZSFA


Funding: COmON Foundation

Date: 2022 – 2023

Contact person: Frances Chase fchase@This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

MaKwa Honey Infographic Final



  • Engaging with communities adjacent to ZSFA to develop CF
  • Developing detailed funding proposals for community forest projects, and fundraising
  • Promoting “Herding for Health” approach within the State and community forests as a means of increasing the community benefits from the State Forest
  • Undertake a full biodiversity inventory
  • Develop funding proposals for implementation of species plans and sustainable use of valuable species
  • Support and capacity to MEFT / Directorate of Forestry with the implementation of Zambezi State Forest management plan


Implementing an integrated approach to Natural Resource Management in the Middle Cubango-Okavango Basin to mitigate land degradation

Title: Implementing an integrated approach to Natural Resource Management in the Middle Cubango-Okavango Basin to mitigate land degradation

Funding: European Union (EU) 

Date: 2021 – 2022

Contact person: Frances Chase fchase@This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


  • Reduced risks of riverine degradation through integrated Natural Resource Management;
  • ObjectivReduced vulnerability of communities through diversification of income streams opportunities and food sources;
  • Increased knowledge of policies around degradation and biodiversity loss.

Completed Projects

Man and Biosphere - Consultancy

Funding: UNESCO
Dates: August 2012 – August 2013


UNESCO Man and Biosphere (MAB) Reserve Feasibility Study

NNF carried out a feasibility study on the possible creation of a UNESCO Man and Biosphere (MAB) reserve in Namibia. MAB, an international programme established in 1971 with over 500 reserves in 117 countries. MAB reserves comprise three main functions: conservation, development, and logistic support. MAB in Namibia focused on Mudumu North complex in East Caprivi which includes four conservancies (Mashi, Muyuni, Sobbe, and Kwando), two protected areas (Bwabwata and Mudumu national parks), and commercial enterprises such as lodges.

The aim of the project was to quantify and qualify the potential impacts of a Biosphere Reserve in Namibia.

Main activities:

  • review of other MAB reserves in Southern Africa
  • collection of field data from the Caprivi region
  • where appropriate, cost-benefit analysis

The MAB programme combines science, economics, and education to improve human livelihoods and safeguard ecosystems, as well as providing research and logistical support to areas that are significant for biodiversity conservation. MAB status helps to raise the profile of an area, enables knowledge sharing with the MAB network, and can help to leverage funding.

Succulent Karoo Ecosystem


This programme was part of a global initiative in support of conservation and sustainable development in biodiversity hotspots around the world. Namibia's hotspot is the Succulent Karoo which spans western parts of South Africa and southern Namibia. 

In Namibia the programme was run by the Namibia Nature Foundation (NNF). Nearly US$ 1 million was allocated by the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund to the Namibia component of the Succulent Karoo Ecosystem Programme (SKEP) in support of conservation and sustainable development activities in the Succulent Karoo. Namibia's priority area is the Sperrgebiet. 

Aim of SKEP Namibia

"Biodiversity in the Succulent Karoo Ecosystem of Namibia is effectively conserved and managed by the state and civil society through an integrated programme of conservation action and co-management for the sustainable development of the region, the national economy and the livelihoods of people."

NNF's involvement with the programme began in 2004 and included programme management and implementation; coordination within Succulent Karoo Ecosystem and buffer areas; secretariat services to the steering committee; networking, facilitation and coordination with parallel projects; small grants management; financial management; monitoring and evaluation. The final NNF project as part of the SKEP programme, completed in 2012, was providing strategic support to the consolidation of the management and development of the newly proclaimed Sperrgebiet National Park and immediately adjacent areas

Productive Land and Seascapes


Knowledge Centers For Organic Agriculture - Knowledge Hub Southern Africa (KHSA)

Project Name: Knowledge Centers For Organic Agriculture - Knowledge Hub Southern Africaouthern Africa Knowledge Hub (KHSA)

Funding: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ)

Partners: Namibia Organic Association (NOA) and Namibia Nature Foundation (NNF)

Starting date: 2019-2022

Target Area: Kavango West and East, and Zambezi Region 

Contact Person: Marieke Voigts, Project Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


  • The actors of the knowledge hubs and their networks in the regions of Eastern and Southern Africa, West, North and Central Africa are strengthened in their role of promoting organic agriculture and agroecology.
  • improved access to and dissemination of knowledge (collection, preparation and dissemination)
  • Enhance multiplier capacity (strengthening competence)
  • Build and/or strengthen networks and relationships including establishing and supporting PGS groups

Food security and habitat protection in KAZA - KAZA ARISE

Project Name: Food security and habitat protection in KAZA – KAZA ARISE

Funding: German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), through the Bengo Engagement Global program, and World Wildlife Fund (WWF)

Partners: Integrated Rural Development and Nature Conservation (IRDNC)

Starting date: 2021-2024

Target Area: Kavango West and East, and Zambezi Region 

Contact Person: Marieke Voigts, Project Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Project Summary

This aims to bring stakeholders together to promote agroecological approaches in crop and livestock production. The successful adoption of these approaches should increase food production in smaller areas without shifting cultivation and thus safeguard wildlife habitats and diversify income through the sale of surplus produce. Project activities include crop and vegetable cultivation, livestock production, civil society advocacy, and transboundary collaboration (including Zambia and Zimbabwe).


  • At least 625 smallholder households in the project area in Namibia benefit from enhanced food security and livelihoods while reducing the degradation of natural habitats and land conversion.
  • On a national level, political and institutional support for sustainable agriculture including livestock keeping is enhanced by the active political participation of civil society actors. 

InfoRange - Increasing efficiency in rangeland-based livestock value chains through machine learning and digital technologies

Project summary 

Pastoral livestock production on rangelands is an important land-use system and contributes between 15 and 60 % to the agricultural GDP of countries in eastern and southern Africa. Largely mobile herds exploit the temporal and spatial heterogeneity in resource availability (pulses) on rangelands. This production strategy has advantageously low fossil fuel input needs but is very knowledge and information intensive. Therefore opportunities derived from digitalisation will have a high potential to increase efficiency (‘precision pastoralism’). 

To successfully introduce the technology InfoRange uses a transdisciplinary approach to co-design the ICT solutions with users and embeds them in social innovations. By an actor- and activity oriented approach we build on the knowledge of different involved actor groups to understand how their decision-making can be improved through ICT. 

Co-designed ITC solutions will enhance sustainable rangeland use and efficiency in livestock production through improved grazing management and veterinary service provision. InfoRange will combine user-generated information (e.g. similar to geotagging photos in google maps or live traffic updates) with remotely sensed data. State-of-the-art machine learning models will be developed to analyse the generated crowd data (e.g. time series), capture and understand phenomena such as differences in pasture use intensity as well as classify and recognise patterns in different scenarios. Including representatives of different governance bodies from the onset of the project permits to creation of outputs in formats suitable to enhance policy decisions.

Inforange Consortium


InfoRange aims at improving rangeland use and governance and increasing resource-use and production efficiency in rangeland-based livestock production through digital and ICT applications/services that permit user-generated information acquisition and transmission. It also seeks to contribute to integrating external telemetry and observatory data with land-user generated data on bio-geo-physical ecosystem features in order to render digital and ICT services more relevant for land-users’ immediate management decisions on grazing, watering and health management.

InfoRange uses transdisciplinary approach to

  • Adapt, modify and further develop existing ICT tools for decision support in rangeland management and use as well as for veterinary service provision
  • Develop procedures and solutions to enhance the use of ICT tools by land-users and increase their distribution and accessibility under reduced network coverage
  • Combine approaches from citizen-science, crowd-data sourcing, machine-learning and participatory monitoring and evaluation to render these tools more relevant for decision making at different governance levels

Project location 

In Kenya, the project will be implemented in the northern arid and semi-arid Marsabit County in Laisamis and Moyale Subcounties – i.e. two study locations. In Namibia, InfoRange will be implemented in the Kavango East Region (including the Ndiyona Constituency) and Omaheke Region (including the Otjombinde Constituency). The chosen sites represent communal livestock-management systems, which will ensure that the techniques developed for better resource monitoring and evaluation (M&E) are relevant for the people on the ground and will enable an easy scaling-up of the project activities.

Project structure, work packages and their tasks

Ptoject Structure

InfoRange is structured in seven Work Packages (WPs) with defined Work Tasks (WTs) for each WP

Screenshot 2024 03 29 at 1.05.17 PM

Global Environmental Issues & Policies

Support to Multilateral Environmental Agreements


Recosting and Refinement of the Costs to Fully Implement Namibia’s Second National Biodiversity Strategy Action Plan (NBSAP2)

Funding: GIZ’s ResMob Project (Resource Mobilisation for Biodiversity Conservation) on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the German Federal Ministry for the Environment

Starting date: 2017

Contact person: Angus Middleton This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Courtney McLaren  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Alternatively, our office number: 061 248345. 

The NNF has been working with the BioFin methodology, developed by the UNDP, to re-cost Namibia’s second NBSAP (national biodiversity strategies and action plan) to produce a more accurate and disaggregated costing. NBSAPs are the primary tool, at the national level, for countries who have ratified the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) to meet their commitments. Namibia is currently mid-way through its second NBSAP (2012 -2021) with its strategic goals and targets aligning with those of the CBD’s Aichi Targets and 129 specific activities having been identified for implementation.

These activities and their respective targets had been estimated to cost just under 500 million NAD in 2013 (or 606 million NAD in today’s currency). This estimate has been considered inadequate and thus NNF was commissioned to achieve the following three objectives:

  • Evaluate which resources are needed in relation to what has been budgeted to allow a successful implementation of NBSAP2
  • Re-calculation and refinement of the costs be based on the UNDP-BIOFIN guidelines
  • Identify and propose the correction of shortcomings of the initial NBSAP2 costing

The BIOFIN methodology looks to guide accurate budgeting for long-term biodiversity related projects by facilitating the disaggregation of estimated costs for all activities in an NBSAP by year and budget line item.

The final analysis found the NBSAP2’s initial estimated costs had been substantially underestimated, with the re-costed total of 7.4 billion being over 12 times that of the initial NBSAP2 estimate. Further, it was found that should the targets of Namibia’s NBSAP2 be achieved by the end of the NBSAP2 ten-year period, twice the investment made in the first five years would be required during the remaining five years of Namibia’s NBSAP2.

The draft report was submitted in September and its findings have been presented at MET to both the GIZ ResMob team, the NBSAP Stakeholder Meeting in October and will shortly be circulated for feedback from relevant stakeholders. The results will be presented in further detail at the GIZ/MET ResMob Stakeholder Dialogue on November 23rd. A policy brief and BIOFIN methodology workshops for MET technical staff are also underway.

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