In a single, phenomenal week, Ewaso Lions Founder Shivani Bhalla received two major recognitions for her work conserving Kenya’s lion population.
First, Shivani was recognized as winner of the prestigious Whitley Award. The Whitley Fund for Nature provides awards and grants to the world’s most dynamic conservation leaders, supporting projects that are founded on good science, community involvement and pragmatism. The Award is given to passionate individuals who can create long-lasting conservation impacts on the ground.
Sir David Attenborough, a Trustee of the Whitley Fund for Nature, said, “Whitley Award winners are successful because they don’t just watch and measure – they act! They are the conservation experts – not us. They know what to do and, more importantly, how to get it done.”
Shivani received her award in honor of Ewaso Lions’ work promoting human-lion coexistence among the nomadic pastoralists and lion of northern Kenya. Watch a video about Shivani narrated by David Attenborough.
Quickly following the Whitley announcement came the exciting news that Shivani had been named one of fourteen National Geographic Emerging Explorers. The Emerging Explorers are recognized as tomorrow’s visionaries who are making discoveries, making a difference, and inspiring people to care about the planet.
Shivani, unsurprisingly, dedicated these awards to her Samburu team, whom she described as “a group of special warriors who risk their lives to save lions” and “the real wildlife heroes.”
Congratulations to Shivani and Ewaso Lions!