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Namibia for Life
© NACSO/WWF Namibia

Namibia for Life (N4L) is the first Project Finance for Permanence initiative for the developing world that is designed to secure long-term support to communal conservancies, focusing on ensuring sustainable social, economic and wildlife benefits of the conservancies for the health of the people and the planet. 

Since 1998, when Namibia’s first conservancy was established, the movement has grown to include 86 communal conservancies, which are home to approximately 227,802 community members (9% of Namibia’s population) and cover more than 20% of the country (166,179km²), including 16% of land in conservancies set aside as exclusive wildlife zones, areas that are home to critically endangered black rhino, desert-dwelling lions, elephants and a host of other rare and endangered species of plants and animals. Namibia’s state protected areas share more than 70% of their boundaries with conservancies, thus increasing connectivity between large conservation areas, and allowing free movement of wildlife. This is a significant national and international contribution of communal conservancies to conservation.

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© WWF-Namiibia

In Namibia's rural communities, communal conservancies are engines that drive conservation and sustainable development. To ensure sustainable support for their efforts, N4L has three main components: an Endowment for Extension Services, a Socio-economic Fund, and an Endowment for Conservation Performance Payments. As the developing world’s first PFP for community-managed conservation areas, N4L can secure land under conservancy status including exclusive wildlife zones; maintain viable wildlife populations, expand the value chain to spur economic growth in conservancies; improve general living conditions of conservancy members; manage human-wildlife conflict; reduce poaching; and incorporate climate adaptation and resilience into plans and as a way of life.

The Enduring Earth partnership between WWF, The Nature Conservancy, The Pew Charitable Trusts and Zomalab, was formed to rapidly scale the innovative Project Finance for Permanence (PFP) model to protect the Earth’s most important marine and terrestrial natural areas, engage and benefit local communities who depend on those places, and deliver lasting climate benefits. 

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