Loisaba’s Community Development Project Management Tool

In 2019, Baotree trialled a new coexistence model at Loisaba which aims to provide local communities with a mechanism to actively earn community development goals (such as the installation of predator proof bomas to keep cattle in) through carrying out conservation-based activities.

The model works by assigning conservation tasks known as ‘gigs’ to communities, such as reporting a lion sighting to assist with research and strengthening their boma to help reduce human wildlife conflict. Each of these gigs is rewarded with a conservation currency, “bao-points”, which are then exchanged for a community benefit (the request was ‘predator proof bomas’ – somewhere to keep their livestock safe from predators at night). The more important the gig for conservation, the more bao-points earned! The pilot was a great success, but was run without the technology.

“Nature conservation is about behaviour, and when we can provide dignity to individuals instead of aid – the game of conservation and community relations completely changes” – Dimitri Syrris

After developing their project management software, the Baotree team returned to Loisaba in November 2020 in order to trial it on two neighbouring communities. The software allowed Loisaba to plan community projects, track tasks and prove impact, all in one flexible platform.


In order to receive predator proof bomas (the chosen community benefit), community members needed to report endangered species sightings, human-wildlife conflicts and the removal of invasive species. This was made easy by the Baotree technology – all they had to do was register their phones and dial *724# at no charge. This would notify Loisaba’s “BaoRiders” – security rangers trained by the Baotree team on the model – to verify the task as being complete via an app. This allowed Loisaba to better monitor and evaluate what the cost of living with wildlife was for the Koija and Nanapaa communities.


The tech trial was a success, with 231 tasks reported and 176 verified over the two week period. These figures represent high engagement from both Loisaba and the community members.

“Having spent the past two weeks using Baotree’s software in partnership with our communities, it is very clear that we have underestimated just how engaged our community stakeholders want to be” – Paul Naiputari, Loisaba Community Liaison Officer

Loisaba estimates that wildlife conflict can range between 5 to 20 incidences every month, which is largely dependent on rainfall (more rainfall means more grass, which in turn means wild prey are stronger and harder to catch – so more predation incidences on livestock by predators are reported). Baotree’s software was able to capture this data digitally, with accompanying visual evidence and geo-location data. During the two week technology test, there were 25 wildlife conflicts reported. Baotree’s project management software confirmed 16 conflicts with evidence captured. More data over a longer timeframe will provide Loisaba with monitoring and evaluating capabilities to fundraise for future community projects, and allow community members to simultaneously support biodiversity and provide benefits to their communities.

We’re excited to continue working with Baotree’s project management software and to utilize the data to assist both in future fundraising efforts for community development, and to make better informed conservation decisions from beyond our boundaries.

For more information, go to www.baotree.io and follow the journey on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.

For #InternationalWomansDay this year, we are celebrating the women who are critical to our work at Loisaba. Damaris, Leah, Rita, Doreen and Antonellah tell us about some of the issues women still face in Kenyan communities…

Damaris Jeruto, Operations

 Tell us a little bit about yourself:

“I am from Elgeyo Marakwet County. I have a bachelor’s degree in environmental science and a passion for conservation. I am a woman of substance, a go getter and am proud of the woman I am today because I went through hell to become her.”

Do you feel like women have disadvantages in Kenya?

“Yes. There are family and community obligations – women have no voice especially in the public forum and no authority within their homestead. Their main role is to do the house work and take care of the children. In the case of career women, I believe that whatever a man can do, a woman can do it better, but they are not given key positions in the workplace.”

What are the problems that women face in your community? Have you had to overcome any of them?

“One of the problems women face is lack of sanitary products. It kills a women’s confidence and lowers their self-esteem every month. Girls also end up not going to school during this time. Lack of products forces women and girls to use other alternatives which are not as hygienic, leaving them susceptible to disease.

 “Another problem is single parenting due to early pregnancies before marriage. I have had to overcome this through working hard to balance motherhood with completing my studies. I love working at Loisaba Conservancy as it has assisted me in so many ways. There is nothing stronger than a broken women who has rebuilt herself.”

What can women achieve if given the chance?

“Women are the real architects of the society and they can build nations and make a huge difference if given the chance.”

What message would you like to send other women?

Let us dream big and stay focused!”


Leah Mutiso, Procurement

Tell us a little about yourself.

My name is Leah Mumbi Mutiso. I was born in the Eastern part of Kenya but later settled in the central region. I started working at Loisaba in 2016 as assistant clerk, and also helped in operations and accounts. I later moved to the procurement department where I currently work as the procurement officer.

How did you start to work at Loisaba?

“I decided to work at Loisaba because I like working in cool areas with no pollution, and I’m passionate about conservation – I love animals.”

Do you feel women have disadvantages in Kenya?

“In Kenya, most men feel that their wives should remain at home and take care of domestic chores. They feel threatened if women want to further their education as they don’t want to feel inferior and looked down upon. In government, most of the top positions are occupied by men and when women come up with ideas, no one supports them.”

What are the problems that women face in your community?

“Women are facing many challenges, such as Female Genital Mutilation which is carried out between 8 and 12 years old and can lead to many health complications. Lack of education is another issue. Most people support educating boys rather than girls, as they believe girls bring wealth through marriage rather than jobs. This also causes a high rate of child labour in girls e.g. fetching firewood and water from long distances and helping their mothers take care of their younger siblings.”

 What message would you like to send other women?

“Education is the key to success, you are capable and you can do whatever a man can do (but better!)!”


Rita Orahle, Security & Conservation

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

“My name is Rita Orahle from Maralal, Samburu County. I currently work at Loisaba Conservancy as an Assistant Security Administrator and I am passionate about conservation.”

Do you feel like women have disadvantages in Kenya?

“Today, we have women educated and holding leadership positions that were previously held by men. Women are being empowered and this has brought a change in the view of women in society. However, I feel that women and girls still face challenges such as gender-based violence, harmful cultural practices such as FGM, early marriages and not being fully represented in decision making.”

What are the problems that women face in communities? Have you had to overcome any of these?

“I come from the Rendille community, and have interacted with the Samburu culture which is similar to the Rendille’s. In my community, women face challenges such as early marriages and FGM, which hinders education. Luckily my parents valued educating their children, and have been very supportive of me. I hope that many parents from my community will embrace the importance of educating their daughters.”

 What can women achieve, if given the chance?

Women can achieve a lot. I believe that if women are empowered, the whole society is transformed as it will not only benefit individuals but the entire community.”

What message would you like to send other women?

“Women are equally important in society, and have the power to change the world!”


Antonellah Kaparo, Security Control Room

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

“My name is Antonellah Namunyak Kaparo from Kimanjo village in Laikipia North. I am a Maasai lady. I completed my O Level education at St Francis’ Girl’s Secondary school and now work at Loisaba Conservancy in the security command centre.

Do you feel women have disadvantages in Kenya?

“Yes, they are not given equal opportunities in the society.”

What are the problems that women face in your community? Have you had to overcome any of them?

“Many are not educated, so it is hard for them to have a job to support their families. The community is still very much pastoral, and the women are expected to look after the livestock which makes their lives harder since they are also expected to perform household duties, and take care of the family. I personally overcame this challenge by working hard to get an education and a job, in order to provide for my family and employ a herder for the livestock.”

What can women achieve if given the chance?

“Women can do great things, due to their patient spirit.”

What message would you like to send other women?

“Take courage to understand yourselves – you are important. Stand firm to support yourselves and others who have been left behind.”


Doreen Lekalasimi, Security

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

“My name is Doreen and I am from Oldonyiro in Isiolo county. My parents were incredibly supportive of my education and ensured I went to school. I have always been pushed to work hard for a better tomorrow. I now work at Loisaba’s security command centre. 

Do you feel like women have disadvantages in Kenya?

“Yes. In most cases, they are not given equal chances in the society and that makes them appear and feel inferior to men.”

What are the problems that women face in your community? Have you had to overcome any of these?

“Gender bias, lack of education for girls, early pregnancies and forceful marriages are all issues in the community. I myself overcame some of these issues by striving to work hard in education to achieve economic independence.”

What can women achieve if given the chance?

“A lot. More women are becoming literate and pursuing higher education which is creating an opportunity for them to work and support their families.”

What message would you like to send other women?

The world has changed. You can be anyone you want to be and do great things!”


Read about more members of our team in last year’s blog post here.