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10 of the Most Important Conservation Initiatives to Support in Zambia

Antoinette Booyse

Author: Antoinette Booyse - 30 January 2024

Last Update: 1 November 2023

Part of the Visit Zambia & Zambia Travel & African Safari Collection

Zambia has remarkable biodiversity and vast and diverse landscapes encompassing 20 national parks, each teeming with a multitude of captivating wildlife species. Luangwa is renowned for its thriving leopard population and large herds of elephants, whilst Kafue has multitudes of antelope and zebras, and is renowned for its cheetahs.

Buffalo-herd-in-zambezi-zambia
Buffalo-herd-in-zambezi-zambia

Zambia is a paradise for birdwatchers, with a staggering 858 species having been recorded here! But it’s the nation’s commitment to sustainable tourism and conservation that makes Zambia not just a very good safari destination, but a great one.

Here are some of Zambia’s admirable conservation bodies:

Conservation Lower Zambezi (CLZ)

Founded in 1994, CLZ is a dedicated non-governmental conservation organisation that believes in ‘working today to protect tomorrow’. They support Zambia’s Department of National Parks and Wildlife’s foot patrols, community scout patrols, and provide ‘eyes-in-the-skies’ with a Cessna 172 that carries out aerial patrols.

They also do extensive work in environmental education, community development, the empowerment of women, research, rescue and rehabilitation, and the reintroduction of depleted animal species like pangolin and rhinos. You can support CLZ’s valuable work by volunteering, adopting an animal, or making a donation.

Zambian Carnivore Programme (ZCP)

Active across multiple national parks, this organisation strives to sustainably conserve large carnivore species and the ecosystems they inhabit. They espouse workable human-carnivore coexistence and work through local leadership, communities, science, and effective action.

They also closely study the large carnivores, their prey items, habitats, and the many factors that threaten them. ZCP strongly supports anti-poaching measures, wildlife crime prevention, cooperative land-use planning and species reintroduction. They’ll be grateful for donations to support their vital work.

Game Rangers International (GRI)

Founded in 2008, GRI works across Zambia, with their Elephant Orphanage Project based near Lusaka. GRI is a non-profit organisation that works closely with Zambia’s Department of National Parks and Wildlife to conserve the environment, promote coexistence between humans and elephants in particular, and empower rangers and local communities. Their work covers wildlife rescue, resource protection, and community outreach. You can get involved by donating, adopting a baby elephant, or volunteering.

Chipembele Wildlife Education Trust (CWET)

Named after a local word for rhino, award-winning CWET is a Zambian NGO that was founded in 1998. Its mission is to teach the communities of South Luangwa the value of wildlife and equip them with the knowledge and skills to conserve it. It’s making impactful grass-root changes by providing innovative conservation programmes, field trips, camping experiences, junior ecologist classes, visits to a dedicated education centre and student sponsorships to children across seven local chiefdoms. Some of their past students already hold key positions in Zambian conservation! You can support them through donations or by sponsoring a student.

North Luangwa Conservation Program (NLCP)

The NLCP was created in 1986 under the auspices of the Frankfurt Zoological Society with the aim of conserving wildlife populations, particularly black rhino in the face of the scourge of poaching. The programme supports infrastructure development, law enforcement, anti-poaching measures, community management and ranger training. It works closely with 32 local communities to promote conservation, create tourism initiatives and jobs, develop skills, reduce human-wildlife conflict and attract ecotourism. North Luangwa holds Zambia’s only black rhino population. You can support their efforts by donating or sponsoring an animal.


The David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation (DSWF)

Founded in 1984 by the renowned wildlife artist and conservationist, David Shepherd, DSWF supports conservation initiatives in Zambia to protect elephants, rhinos, lions, pangolins and African wild dogs. Their wide-ranging support covers wildlife law enforcement, education, rangers, research, monitoring, rescue, rehabilitation, release, wildlife emergencies and promoting human-wildlife coexistence. You can support them in various ways, including making a donation, buying an artwork, adopting an animal, or sponsoring a ranger.

Wildlife Crime Prevention (WCP)

Based in Lusaka, WCP works with Zambia’s Department of National Parks and Wildlife and other community stakeholders to reduce all facets of illegal wildlife products and timber trafficking. They also contribute by monitoring cases, supporting prosecutions, sentencing, and supporting human and animal rights. They work to increase public awareness of wildlife crime, like poaching and the bushmeat trade, and its devastating effects on biodiversity, communities, and the economy. They strongly support youth and women in conservation. You can support them through donations.

Kasanka Trust

Operating from Kasanka National Park (site of that amazing annual 19-million-strong bat migration!), the Trust aims to conserve the Park’s wildlife and habitat, whilst promoting sustainable tourism.

Their projects focus closely on resource protection, infrastructure development, community development, environmental education and sustainable tourist development. You can support them by visiting the park, volunteering, or donating.

Project Luangwa

Based in the bountiful Luangwa Valley, Project Luangwa was established in 2010. Its mission is to promote wildlife conservation through education and community support, and community empowerment through tourism. They promote education, sponsorship, construction and digital learning to improve educational standards. They also work hard to promote gender equality. They employ local artisans at good wages, distribute fuel-efficient eco-stoves and help with school construction projects and tree-planting. You can help by sponsoring a child, donating, or buying crafts from their shop.

Zambia Primate Project (ZPP)

ZPP was started by Cosmas Mumba, an exceptional primatologist, in 2002. In May 2023 it was incorporated into Game Rangers International. ZPP’s dedicated mission is threefold – to rescue, rehabilitate and then release baboons and vervet monkeys back into the wild of Lower Zambezi National Park. Many of these monkeys are victims of the unlawful wildlife trade in Zambia. To date, 810 primates have been released back into the wild. ZPP also works tirelessly to sensitise and educate Zambian communities to reduce the number of primates that are captured. You can help by adopting a monkey or donating towards their care.

A Zambian safari is sure to exceed your wildest dreams and expectations as you discover the marvels of this stunning, conservation-conscious country. Contact Discover Africa – our expertise will ensure you enjoy the best holiday tailored meticulously to suit your preferences, schedule and budget.

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