LUMO Community Wildlife Sanctuary came into being in 1997 when three of the Ranches situated in the Tsavo West Zone namely Lualenyi, Mramba and Oza merged to form a wildlife conservancy.
Lumo is part of the historical elephant migration corridor linking Tsavo Ecosystem to the Shimba Hills in the neighboring Kwale County. Lualenyi was established in 1965 as a Limited Ranching Company, Oza and Mramba established in the 1980 and 1991 respectively, are communally owned. Together they add to 5288 shareholders.
In 1997, a memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed among the three ranches, formally establishing the LUMO Community Wildlife Sanctuary. The Sanctuary was registered as Self-Help Group in 1998 and later as a Trust in the year 2001.
LUMO membership is solely drawn from the Taita Ethnic Community. Organizational structure consist of the Board of Trustees is comprised of nine members (i.e. the chairman, secretary, treasurer and 6 others from member ranches equally). The sanctuary has a manager, accounts clerk and 14 game scouts professionally trained by KWS at Manyani field training school.
The area is rich in animal diversity with over 102 animals of which 61 are large mammals and over 350 bird species being recorded. The land is mainly rolling Savannah and the stunning views from over lodge (Lion Bluff) stretch to Tanzania pare mountains and legendary Mt. Kilimanjaro.
The Conservancy was establish to mainly to mainly benefit the community and it boasts of 100% employment of its staffs, from the manager, accounts clerk to its dedicated rangers. The community also gets bursaries from the sanctuary which is devoted to improvement in infrastructure, education and health to neighboring community. With the drilled borehole funded by AWF, locals from villages around do come to Lumo to fetch water.
The initial development of Lumo has been possible due to funding from two donors. The European Union, through the Biodiversity Conservation program (BCP) has financed LUMO for developing of the sanctuary’s infrastructure, while USAID through the conservation of resources through enterprise (CORE) program to develop a tented lodge which they now have leased to a private investor at a fee. African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) participated in the completion of the lodge (Lions Bluff) and is the development partner.
The objectives of the Conservancy are:-
- To promote biodiversity conservation
- To help in poverty alleviation and improve the living standards of the community sustainably.
- To encourage tourism related enterprises and other environmental, economical and social complementary land use.