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Cons course. Credit: Kathryn Phillips / Fauna & Flora

Cons course. Credit: Kathryn Phillips / Fauna & Flora

Building capacity of the next generation of Liberia’s conservation professionals


We are working in Liberia to help create and expand a national programme that focuses on building the capacity of the country’s next generation of conservation professionals.

Since 2012, Fauna & Flora has led a national programme in Liberia that focuses on building the capacity of the next generation of conservation professionals. This work led to the establishment of the Sapo Conservation Centre in Sapo National Park, which serves as a training centre where Liberian students and professionals can get practical conservation and research experience, and as a field station and research base for conservationists and international researchers.

A well-established internship and mentoring programme offers participants the opportunity to work directly on the front line of conservation while receiving training and guidance to support their professional development.


By building the capacity of Liberia’s up-and-coming conservation professionals, we can ensure that the country’s rich natural heritage is managed sustainably into the future. In particular, we aim to increase in-country capacity for conservation and protected area management including biomonitoring, awareness raising, community engagement, and supporting sustainable livelihoods.

We are also working with Liberian conservation professionals to help them develop the skills and experience needed to tackle key threats to Liberia’s biodiversity (such as illegal wildlife trade), carry out wildlife and biodiversity surveys, and create species action plans for elephants, pygmy hippos, western chimpanzees and other threatened species found in Liberia and its transboundary landscapes.

Our work

Capitalising on our established national capacity-building programme, Fauna & Flora is playing a lead role in developing a system of applied training to boost Liberia’s ability to effectively implement national species action plans, and supporting the development of a national strategy for illegal wildlife trade. Fauna & Flora and the Forestry Development Authority (FDA) organised a second regional workshop to update the existing ten-year conservation strategy for pygmy hippos across range states and is implementing a nationwide and transboundary survey of these elusive animals.

Fauna & Flora is also working with the FDA and several partners to build the capacity of law enforcement agencies, wildlife officers and park rangers to improve protected area law enforcement and strengthen Liberia’s ability to respond to illegal wildlife trade.

Key milestones


    Fauna & Flora starts a three-year capacity-building project to combat illegal wildlife trade.


    Fauna & Flora is awarded a three-year grant from the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) to develop Liberia’s capacity to effectively conserve the pygmy hippo through applied training.


    Fauna & Flora begins a large five-year project for north-west Liberia, which further expands professional development opportunities.


    Dr Mary Molokwu-Odozi, Fauna & Flora’s Liberia country manager, is shortlisted as one of three finalists for the prestigious Tusk Conservation Award.


    Fauna & Flora expands into north-west Liberia in partnership with Skills and Agricultural Development Services to provide mentorship and sustainable development opportunities to more professionals both from the government and civil society sectors.
    Sapo Conservation Centre opens in Sapo National Park.


    Fauna & Flora initiates a national programme in Liberia focusing on developing the capacity of the next generation of conservation professionals.


We are grateful for the support from the following funders for this project:

  • UK Government’s Illegal Wildlife Trade Challenge Fund
  • Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF)
  • Pygmy Hippo Foundation 
  •  Stop Ivory / Elephant Protection Initiative
  • Arcus Foundation 
  • US Fish and Wildlife Service
  • The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) – through the West Africa Biodiversity and Climate Change (WA BiCC) programme
  • Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD)

Conservation capacity

Long-term conservation success depends on developing a network of committed individuals and institutions that are strong enough and effective enough to address the threats to our natural world. Fauna & Flora has always worked on the premise that solutions to conservation problems ultimately lie in local hands.

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