210728 Big Life Commanding Officer Mpumpu

Big Life rangers are responsible for a number of vital conservation gains for the Greater Amboseli ecosystem. But those gains are only possible because of the dedication of each individual. One such individual is Senior Sergeant Ole Mpumpu.

Born and raised in the town of Kimana, in the shadow of Kilimanjaro, Mpumpu received no formal education, but was determined to find his place in the world. Working his way from the bottom up, he now has over 27 years dedicated to his personal and professional mission of protecting wildlife and wild lands.

Mpumpu is currently in charge of four outposts in Kenya near the Tanzania border. These outposts are critically situated in zones with the highest rates of human-wildlife conflict and instances of poaching. Along with his fellow rangers, Mpumpu conducts extensive daily patrols on foot and by vehicle to gather intelligence, detect and intercept illegal activity, and monitor activity via hidden field cameras to thwart poachers and prevent habitat destruction.

Importantly, Mpumpu also coordinates and leads community rangers to help reduce human-elephant conflict. His team responds quickly to community calls for help, preventing elephants from entering farmland when possible, and pushing them out when not. On rare occasions, Mpumpu has even gone alone to take on the incredibly dangerous task of chasing elephants from farms. His dedication and courage are constantly on display, and he is an incredible role model for new recruits and his fellow rangers.

Senior Sergeant Ole Mpumpu is an exceptional person for many reasons, but his resolute life-long commitment to the flourishing of wildlife, wilds lands, and his community, despite the inherent danger and reality of working as a ranger in the East African bush, is an inspiration to us all.

We are grateful to Sergeant Mpumpu and his incredible dedication to the wildlife, wild lands, and communities of East Africa.

If you are also inspired by his dedication, you can support him and his fellow rangers with sustainable, reliable funding by joining our Ranger Club as a monthly donor. New Ranger Club members, or existing members who increase their giving amount, will be entered to win a bundle of Big Life merchandise. Sign up at biglife.org/monthly-giving.

Photo: Bruce Reynolds

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