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The Secretary General Emphasizes Heritage Importance at Baringo Great Rift Valley Geopark Workshop

Stakeholders’ Validation Workshop of Baringo Great Rift Valley aspiring Geopark Baseline Survey Report

The Kenya National Commission for UNESCO in collaboration with the Baringo County Government and Baringo Great Rift Valley aspiring Geopark held a stakeholders’ validation workshop for the recently developed socio-economic baseline survey report.

The baseline report was developed at a time when plans are at an advanced stage to submit the nomination documents for designation and official recognition of this important landscape by UNESCO. If designated, this would be the first Geopark in Kenya and the third in Africa.

The purpose of a baseline report was to document the current socio-economic status of the local communities, current products and services produced, revenues generated and identify capacity needs. Recommendations from this report are key in monitoring impact, value addition interventions, branding of products and services to increase marketability and capacity building interventions that would ensure that communities leverage on the Geopark brand to improve their fortunes.


The two-day activity, held on 22nd – 23rd March 2023 at the Rift Valley Hills Resort (Kabarnet), brought together over 50 representatives drawn from opinion leaders; Baringo County Government officials; civil society; youth, women and elders; and community-based groups.

The workshop was officially opened by Hon. Zachary Kiprotich, County Executive Committee Member in charge of Tourism, Trade and Cooperative Development Baringo County Government and graced also by KNATCOM Secretary General/CEO, Dr. Evangeline Njoka.  In her remarks, the Secretary General/CEO of the Kenya National Commission for UNESCO Dr. Evangeline Njoka reiterated the commitment of the Commission in supporting the designation of the Baringo Great Rift valley aspiring Geopark to UNESCO Global Geopark Network and complementing the Kenya Government’s efforts towards championing and promoting peace in the region. She noted that the Geopark concept embraces a holistic approach to that promotes protection of natural, cultural and geological heritage, sustainable development, education and networking at various levels while embracing international standards.


She urged the participants to embrace this concept and support the process to the very end noting that the Geopark can be a game-changer in providing opportunities for socio-economic growth and increase fortunes for the local communities. She challenged them to diversify investments and entrepreneurship options leveraging on the various nature-based enterprises that the County is endowed with.


The baseline validation report will generate evidence based socio-economic data, critical for monitoring the future trends, growth and impacts. She acknowledged the contribution of German NATCOM, Global Geopark Network, UNESCO, County and National Geopark Committees among other partners.

The workshop provided a platform for additional input into the report and continuous stakeholder engagement and sensitization about the importance of Baringo’s unique geological, natural and cultural heritage and the role of the geopark in achieving national targets and priorities as well as global targets such as Sustainable Development Goals.   Additionally, the workshop provided an opportunity for the local community members and representatives to be debriefed on progress made with nomination process. to It also provided opportunities for networking and sharing best practices, experiences, challenges and opportunities in management of aspiring geopark. T


With only two UNESCO accredited geoparks in Africa (Morocco and Tanzania) out of the 177 across 46 UNESCO Member States, Kenya hopes that Baringo Great Rift Valley aspiring Geopark would be Africa’s third UNESCO Global Geopark.

More info:
Baringo Great Rift Valley aspiring Geopark
UNESCO Global Geopark (UGGp)
Global Geopark network (GGN)

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