Team Talk: Education for Conservation in Kenya

By Ali Allport

In Africa, there is an unquestionable link between wildlife conservation, human health, population and environmental degradation. To help bridge the gap in government health care provision, The Safari Collection is helping to facilitate access to medical facilities, education and health care with an exciting new project.

Team Talk is an innovative project, which uses a combination of sport and workshops as a medium to encourage empowerment of girls and young women, and considerably improve their sexual education and self-awareness.

Within the Maasai/Samburu culture female oppression, circumcision and early marriage are ingrained, often leaving girls without the educational opportunities of their male peers.

Girls and women who are educated are far more likely to marry later, and have smaller and healthier families. Therefore we recognize that investing in girls’ education is one of the most effective ways of reducing poverty.

Team talk mara

Research shows that 66% of Kenyan high school boys and girls are sexually active, and that 50% of those have had sex more than once, and 40% with multiple partners (Wanyonyi 2014). These statistics concur with the National Council for population and Development where 5 of every 10 girls and 3 of every 10 boys, between 15 and 19 are said to be sexually active.

Most intercourse is unprotected and occurs with multiple partners. This behavior is manifested in high incidences of pregnancy, abortion, and STI’s including HIV.

In light of the above there is a need for providing Sex Education (SE) to children in schools in Kenya, to help bring about positive changes in behaviour. Team Talk is a comprehensive SE program which addresses the physical, biological, spiritual and mental development of the children. It is an activity-based approach, which is personalized to touch the emotions of the students. It is well received by the students, as it is divorced from the normal school curriculum.

The project is evaluated through the use of questionnaires and focus groups.



In order to effectively implement the Team Talk program we have partnered with the following organisations:

EGHO –  (Exploring Global Health Opportunities) is a small UK based NGO, who have concentrated their work in Kenya. Based on their on the ground experiences they identified a need for a female empowerment project in Kenyan schools. With a multi skilled group they put together the Team Talk project, which has been running successfully since 2011.

TAG RUGBY TRUST – EGHO has partnered with Tag Rugby Trust (TRT) to provide the sports element of the Team talk project. Tag Rugby encourages interaction between boys and girls, builds confidence and helps them to be more receptive to the discussions and workshops that comprise the educational part of Team Talk.

This year we would like to thank RMA Motors Kenya for very generously lending Team Talk a Landrover Freelander for the duration of the project, this was a huge help to us and we welcome you into the TEAM TALK fold.


This year for the first time The Safari Collectiom partnered with the MARA CHEETAH PROJECT (MCP) and THE MARA LION PROJECT (MLP) to bring TEAM TALK to four schools in the community living just outside the Maasai Mara National Reserve.

The Mara Cheetah Project led by Femke Broekhuis, and The Mara Lion Project led by Nic Elliot, have both been set up by Kenya Wildlife Trust to establish numbers of the two big cats across the Mara Ecosystem, as well as identifying and mitigating the threats against the two species.

Through this partnership of The Safari Collection, The Mara Cheetah/Lion projects and Team Talk, we hope to reinforce the importance of the three pillars – COMMUNITY, TOURISM AND CONSERVATION, and help encourage communities to embrace conservation.


This year we also formed a special partnership with the Haller Foundation.

A central challenge for young girls is a lack of education of how the female reproductive system works including their menstrual cycle.  This lack of understanding and limited access or use of contraception can cause unintentional pregnancy resulting in young girls leaving school, of which few find employment later on.  Additionally, for most girls from poorer communities the cost of purchasing even basic cotton or sanitary towels is quite prohibitive.  This results in them missing a quarter of their classes each term just to avoid the embarrassment of “accidents”.

Team talk bracelets

The “Repro Bracelet” is intended primarily as an educational tool to help teach girls between the ages of 11 to 16 about their menstrual cycle. As a charity, Haller Trust promotes a holistic approach to self sustainability, and they have identified this method as a key step towards the goal of keeping girls in secondary education. Knowing their individual cycle allows girls to understand that there is a relationship between bleeding and fertility and how basic human physiology functions.

HALLER donated 200 bracelets to Team Talk, which we distributed to all the girls in a workshop educating them how to use them and calculate their individual cycle. Taught in this way, with appropriate workshops on sex education and health, the menstrual cycle and fertility then it is not generally perceived as encouraging girls to have intercourse prematurely.



Biology teacher and house master at Marlborough College Wiltshire UK


Qualified Dr who has just completed a 6-month residential post at Nanyuki District Hospital with EGHO.


Qualified teacher working full time at Braeburn Nanyuki, Kenya

RONNIE OKOTH – Tag Rugby Trust

Ronnie works all over Kenya as a talent scout for U19 Rugby and is the Tag Rugby Trust representative in Kenya.

RAYMOND OTIENO – Tag Rugby Trust

Raymond is one of our most dedicated Tag Rugby Trust coaches based in Nanyuki. He is studying in Nanyuki.

ALISON ALLPORT – The Safari Collection

Community and Conservation Manager for The Safari Collection