African Solutions to African Problems: Muthoni and Elizabeth are starting ‘EcoHope Africa’

Early career conservationists Liz and Muthoni are transforming three of the biggest challenges, unattainable paid jobs, organisations’ resistance to change and limited social impact, into a solution tailored to their needs by starting EcoHope Africa.
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Today, I had a WildHub conversation with early career conservationists Muthoni Njuguna and Elizabeth (Liz) Githendu who are both based in Kenya. We talk about their career progression to date, including barriers to getting a paid conservation job, and how they have found a creative solution: starting their own conservation start-up! 

They even gave us a ‘sneak preview’ into their start-up by sharing its name, “EcoHope Africa”, their planned community-based activities and the sustainable social impact they are hoping to drive. 

I think conservation should be fun and exciting and a conversation we have in every single household out there” (Muthoni Njuguna, WildHub Conservation Catalyst)

Challenges they have experienced and how they have overcome these (from 3.43 min):

  • Getting the message of being under-qualified or being over-qualified; only have been able to volunteer or do internships (from 4.11-5:42 min)
  • Spaces where you can meet with people who can provide opportunities and build a relevant network have barriers, such as financial barriers to attending conferences.
  • Niche conservation experience specified in job ads.

Other topics we covered are:

  • How EcoHope Africa came about (from 8:11 min)
  • EcoHope’s activities (from 9:50 min)

Would you like to help Liz and Muthoni in their journey to develop EcoHope? This is the support they are currently in need of so you can connect with them if you have the skills and experience that matches their start-up’ needs: 

  • Graphic design work
  • Website design work
  • Knowledge on how to set up a social impact start-up (e.g. Monitoring and evaluating social impact)
  • Advice on financial/revenue frameworks: pros and cons, in particular comparing a company status to a social enterprise status. 

In our previous conversation, Muthoni also made a call to all young conservationists who are currently experiencing challenges in their career development and are thinking of starting their own conservation initiatives: connect with Muthoni (WildHub profile here and email below) if you are interested in joining a private WildHub room where you can network with each other, share your personal challenges and brainstorm about solutions together. 

Curious about EcoHope Africa? Please find their website (still in progress of being build) and contacts below:

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Go to the profile of Judith Njoka
6 months ago

It sounds interesting, thank you for sharing.

Go to the profile of Elly Omondi
5 months ago

interesting