Providing maintenance, attracting tourists
With support from PAPFor, and in keeping with the commitment signed by SCNL and communities close to Gola Forest National Park (GFNP), in the upper Sokpo Region of GFNP to regularly maintain the road leading to the Elephant Falls and campsite facilities, a total of ten community workers including two females were hired to do side brushing, repaired damaged bridges and clean up the Elephant Falls Campsite site.
The clearing of the road is now providing clear access to tourists and guests the opportunity to safely drive to the Elephant Falls. The youth who helped to brush the road expressed satisfaction with SCNL for the ongoing collaboration. SCNL Eco-tourism Officer, Adolphus Tiah, and Camp Israel Assistant Town Chief, Mohammed Kamara Commended PAPFor and SCNL for the outstanding services for the maintenance of the Elephant Falls.
On the 24th of January 2023, a team comprising 17 persons including drivers from the US Forest-Service, USAID, Solimar International Consultancy, DW-TV, and staff from SCNL arrived at Camp Israel at sundown and were warmly received by residents of Camp Israel Community. The team later went to visit the Elephant Falls, and SCNL PAPFor Project Coordinator, James P. Mulbah, who led the visitors, informed the community of the purpose of the trip.
The group was divided into two, Arthur M. Madawee, PAPFor Community Focal Person for the Elephant Falls Development Venture led one group of eco-lodge and trails designers or mappers and engineers. While, Tiah, also led group two, which comprised of people with expertise in sign interpretation development, and Journalists for DW-TV who have come to cover stories from GFNP, and livelihood interventions made by SCNL to communities around the park.
After two nights of stay at the Elephant Falls Campsite, the trip climaxed with an awareness education meeting on trial development with residents of Camp Israel community. During this educative and information-sharing meeting, Matt Humke, a consultant from Solimar International highlighted the importance of the trail to be constructed at the Elephant Falls. He said residents of Camp Israel will have the opportunity to get trained in hospitality, tour guide, and the hiring of skilled and unskilled people during the construction of the trail and eco-lodge.
Meanwhile, the key points of education on trial development were: Planning, designing, construction, gridding and drainages, signposts, mapping interpretative experiences, exploring, education, and communities.