Robin Hurt Wildlife Foundation
We serve on the Robin Hurt Wildlife Foundation Board as Trustee and Treasurer to help support and direct its projects in Tanzania and we are its U.S.A. funding partner. John J. Jackson, III serves as its Treasurer.
The model, flagship project that we are most proud of was not our invention, but we’ve been trustees, officers and the fiduciary charitable foundation partner of it for eight years. That is the Cullman & Hurt Community Wildlife Project in Tanzania. It has built forty-eight schools, operated twelve medical dispensaries, two mobile medical units, and employed three full-time anti-poaching patrols fully equipped with vehicles, uniforms, etc.
Joseph Cullman is deceased and made no provision in his testament or otherwise for the continuance of the Cullman & Hurt Wildlife Project. Consequently, the board has changed the name and reach of the entity to the Robin Hurt Wildlife Foundation, which has extended its reach to Namibia, Botswana and even Europe. The newly renamed Foundation is doing well thanks to the generous support of Robin Hurt’s hunting clients.
Conservation Force serves as the Robin Hurt Wildlife Foundation funding partner. Further, John J. Jackson, III serves on the Board of Trustees as a Trustee and the Treasurer. Conservation Force’s direct help, guidance and support is vital to the direction of this important project in Tanzania.
Click Here to view the CF/RHWF brochure.
The Robin Hurt Wildlife Foundation was established in 1990 by Robin A. Hurt and Joseph F. Cullman III with the basic aim of incentivizing wildlife and habitat such that local communities would be encouraged to help conserve and protect these renewable resources. For a hunting safari operator, intact ecosystems and healthy wildlife populations are its long-term investment; human-poverty is the single greatest threat to that investment.
The Project has been in continuous operation for 16 years and has grown both in scale and scope and currently partners with 33 villages which span eight Districts and seven Regions throughout Tanzania. These villages are all inside or adjacent to hunting blocks assigned to the tourist hunting safari company, Robin Hurt Safaris (Tanzania), Ltd. (RHS). RHWF also partners with the government of Tanzania, specifically the Wildlife Division, to assist and enable the government to extend its conservation related activities.
Given the context that 70% of all Tanzanians live at the resource base level, 40% of Tanzania’s land area is covered by one form of Protected Area or another, and 30% of the total land area is covered by hunting blocks, the involvement of local communities in conservation is paramount if Tanzania is going to continue to use tourism, both consumptive and non-consumptive, as a means to develop the economy and reduce poverty. Currently, all hunting companies are required by regulation to undertake community development activities, support anti-poaching operations, and to develop their blocks for improved sustainability. It should be noted that RHWF began these vary same activities 10 years prior to the establishment of the government’s regulations.
RHWF exists both as a non-governmental organization as well as an operational division of RHS. RHWF is currently registered as a not-for-profit Trust in Tanzania which allows for RHWF to receive and make tax free, charitable donations. RHWF also partners with Conservation Force as it’s 501(c)(3) funding partner in the United States of America.
RHWF Vision Statement:
People and wildlife coexisting together in healthy ecosystems.
RHWF Mission Statement:
The Robin Hurt Wildlife Foundation is dedicated to developing linkages between the sustainable utilization of wildlife, poverty alleviation, and the maintenance of healthy ecosystems. RHWF is committed to supporting local communities to become better stewards of the natural environment upon which they depend.
The aims of RHWF are to initiate, support, and perpetuate activities which:
• Help conserve the indigenous flora and fauna of Tanzania;
• Help conserve wilderness areas and ecosystems of which wildlife is a part;
• Help educate Tanzania citizens regarding the value of conservation of natural resources and the sustainable utilizations of wildlife;
• Actively and directly involve local communities living adjacent to RHS hunting concessions in wildlife conservation endeavors;
The Project is divided into eight Program Area.
1. Village Benefit Program
Clients hunting with RHS donate an additional 20% fee based on the government fee for each trophy species taken. These funds are collected by hunting area and shared equally amongst the participating villages in the calendar year following the hunting season.
Villages, districts, regions, and central government are all informed in writing of the amounts generated for each village. Villages conduct public meetings to decide how to use the funds and follow a rigorous documentation process which ensures transparency and accountability according to the laws of Tanzania. Once all the requirements have been fulfilled, RHWF transfers the funds into the official village bank account and then village is then responsible for executing their own projects.
This system has evolved over 16 years of operation and stands out as one of the most unique and successful public-private-partnership conservation models in Africa today. Importantly, the very system itself is so successful because it builds capacity while at the same time inducing good governance through transparency and participation.
Over the 16 years, RHS clients have donated over USD $1.1 Million to community development activities in Tanzania.
2. Environmental Protection
In concert with the Wildlife Division and relevant local authorities, RHWF operates anti-poaching operations in all of the RHS hunting blocks. Members from the local communities are hired as Village Game Scouts and RHWF provides leadership through hiring Field Officers who are Tanzanians who have graduated from an approved wildlife course. RHWF further supplies vehicles, fuel, food and logistics for patrols. All patrols are accompanied and directed by duly authorized Game Assistants.
3. Education & Health
RHWF has a new program designed to simultaneously address critical threats to livelihood security while at the same time promoting environmental conservation. The Community Health and Wellness Program (CHWEP) has basic, core funding provided to it by a private foundation from Canada. The Health & Wellness Program is currently rolling-out innovated pilot activities in one RHWF area and the Program has five components including:
• Delivery of Health & Wellness Services
• Environmental Education Activities for Schools
• Capacity Building of Village Governments
• Mobile Film Unit (used as a stand-along tool as well for all components)
• Internship Program (providing job opportunities to the next generation of Tanzanian Conservationists).
The Health & Wellness Unit is making tremendous strides in promoting the values of conservation and linking ecosystem health and livelihood security.
These three core activities are specifically designed and integrated to develop a sense of stewardship among local communities. As a result:
They are made aware of the value of the benefits of wildlife and habitat;
They benefit directly from the economic resource;
And are involved in the management and protection of the resources from which they gain.
Additional Robin Hurt Wildlife Foundation areas include:
4. Ecology & Mapping
5. Policy & Collaboration
6. Promotion & Fundraising
7. Program Administration