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Cottar’s Wildlife Conservation Trust (CWCT)

The Cottar’s Wildlife Conservation Trust is a non-profit organization working to conserve critical wilderness and wildlife corridors and areas bordering the Masai Mara and Serengeti National Reserves. The Trust works to protect biodiversity through empowering communities with wildlife conservation.

Our mission is to make natural biodiversity the most valuable and productive land use option for rural landowners in Africa.


Guests pay a per person per night conservancy fee when staying at one of the Cottar’s or tourism partners’ properties.

These fees are donated directly to the CWCT

CWCT uses these funds to lease the 7608-acre Olderkesi Conservancy from the Maasai community

The Maasai community use these funds for their community and personal development

We have begun with leasing an initial 7,600-acre conservancy in Olderekesi which borders the Maasai Mara game reserve.  This is a unique conservation and community theory of change model for the Masai Mara and for Africa, in that the community have decided to not subdivide the land; it remains as one plot set aside for conservation.

For this, we have been awarded The Long Runs’ Global Ecosphere Retreat status – one of only 11 places in the world to be recognized as achieving the highest standards of sustainability.

Read more about what we do

Our High Priority Projects

Lease Land

The first and most important step to wildlife conservation is to secure wildlife habitats. CWCT leases wildlands from the local Maasai community at an economically competitive rate creating a direct relationship between the community and the conservancy, whereby the beneficiaries of thriving wildlife and consequently tourism are the very people who share their lands with the wildlife.

  • $40 per Hectare per month
  • $400 for 10 Ha per month
  • $4000 for 100 Ha per month

Head Quarters

The centre of CWCT Operations where the team will monitor ranger and wildlife movements, store information, facilitate community meetings and efficiently strive towards meeting strategic objectives of the Trust.

Read the full proposal

Community Rangers

The foundation of maintaining the conservancy are the boots on the ground. CWCT employs 30 community rangers of which 10 are the first women rangers in the Mara, and 2 do undercover work against the Illegal Wildlife Trade

  • $300 per Ranger per month
  • $3,600 per Ranger per year
  • $108,000 for all the Rangers for a year

Current scope of work


Acres conserved. We are aiming to double the land under conservation in the next 4 years.


Women’s groups created


Children fed daily through the school feeding program


Classrooms built
  • Ongoing measures to counter illegal wildlife trade
  • The only vulture rehabilitation programme in the Masai Mara
  • The only all-female ranger team in the Masai Mara
  • Human-wildlife conflict resolution mechanisms in-place and ongoing
The Olderkesi Community Conservancy is born out of a new kind of responsible tourism that goes beyond profit and is singularly focused on securing the long term survival of Kenya’s incredible wildlife heritage by uplifting the livelihoods and development options of the Maasai landowners.

Our Partners

Cottar’s Safaris

By staying at Cottar’s 1920s Camp, the private Bush Villa or the Conservation Camp your visit has already made a big impact, the conservation fees you pay go directly to the CWCT.

At our Conservation Camp, all the profits go directly to the CWCT.


African Wildlife Foundation

AWF has an MOU with the Cottars Group to provide a tax-free funding vehicle to our clients and donors to assist us in meeting our conservation and rural development objectives. AWF also partners with CWCT on projects directly, and have provided the funding for the Olderkesi land use plan, rangers training and the construction of CWCT Olderkesi HQ at the airstrip. In addition, AWF represents CWCT and Cottars 1920s safari camp on direct appeals to past guests of Cottars 1920s Camp, as well as to charitable foundations for the funding of Olderkesi; any funds raised are ring-fenced for CWCT and our Olderkesi.