Adapting in a Time of Crisis

CEESP News: by Fred Nelson, CEO of Maliasili and CEESP member*

Maliasili works with leading organizations to find solutions to conservation challenges across Africa by improving their organizational performance and impact. We currently support sixteen leading local organizations working across Kenya, Madagascar, Namibia, Tanzania, and Zambia. 

In response to the global covid-19 pandemic we have adapted much of our organizational support activities in order to support our partners as they respond to the crisis in the field. Our team has worked to develop a range of new management and response tools that help local organizations adjust to remote work, revising budgets, and changing work plans.

conservation challenges across Africa - COVID-19

As a new informational tool, our “COVID Reader” is a weekly email brief that we have published for the past 8 weeks and counting. Through this newsletter we are sharing a selection of articles and resources that we believe are relevant to the work of our partners and that address the broader impacts of COVID-19 on the conservation field.

3 Strategic Questions for Adapting During COVID and How to Adapt Your Work Plan and Budget are briefs that we developed to provide a framework for local organizations to better manage the COVID-19 crisis by asking the right questions, adapting work plans and budgets, and supporting team members during this unprecedented time.

Top 5 Tips for Organizational Responses to Covid-19 is a post outlining tips for all organizations to keep top of mind throughout this period as we adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic.

We also are working with our local partners to identify potential solutions to existing community-based conservation models in Africa brought on by the massive loss of conservation-related tourism revenue to community ventures. In this recent commentary for Mongabay written with a number of African conservation leaders, we identify a number of key emerging issues and potential areas of opportunity for improving existing conservation models.

At Maliasili we are always rethinking the ways we can support our partners and will continue to produce additional resources for conservation organizations to utilize during this incredibly challenging time.


* Fred Nelson has been working for 20 years in African conservation to develop effective strategies and lasting solutions, support innovative local organizations, and build diverse partnerships. He’s lived and worked in the field with Maasai communities in Tanzania, designed and led research on the politics of conservation in Africa, and played a leading role in global networks and collaborations that span land rights, wildlife conservation, and ecotourism.

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