The Rt Hon Jack McConnell MSP joins the PAW cause!

The former First Minister of Scotland and former leader of the Scottish Labour Party, Jack McConnell has pledged his support for Project African Wilderness (PAW), a  conservation organisation that is protecting wildlife in Malawi.  Mr McConnell has agreed to become an Ambassador for their work.  Malawi has very strong connections with Scotland due to the work of the renowned missionary and explorer David Livingstone, and PAW is delighted that Jack McConnell, the High Commissioner Designate, will champion its cause.

PAW consists of a growing number of people working hard to protect the stunning Mwabvi Wildlife Reserve in southern Malawi, and to reintroduce the black rhinos that used to live there.  PAW is creating a sustainable future for the reserve and also helping the surrounding villages.  The population around the reserve is estimated to be at 60,000 and it is already benefiting from the introduction of water taps and road maintenance as well as education visits by local schools.  In the longer term, PAW also plans to teach conservation techniques and game scout skills to both Malawians and international paying visitors.  PAW’s major target for 2008/09 is to construct a boundary fence for the reserve; this will protect the villages and existing animals and allow the reintroduction of large game including elephants and black rhino. 

Jack McConnell said ”I am delighted to become an Ambassador for Project African Wilderness.  PAW has ambitious plans for nature conservation and sustainable development in Malawi, and I support their efforts.

The Scotland-Malawi Partnership is all about direct benefit to the people of Malawi.  This project will benefit the environment and the educational opportunities in the Warm Heart of Africa.  I’m sure others will want to support these aims too."

Gaynor Asquith, Director of PAW in the UK, said “Jack’s support will catapult us into a new arena and will focus a great deal of attention on Malawi and the work we are doing at PAW to save this stunning wildlife reserve. Mwabvi is a beautiful area, currently home to a variety of smaller mammals and prolific birdlife, but it would be wonderful one day to return the black rhino to its natural environment.  With the help of Jack, local commerce  and like-minded people, we can continue to make a difference to Mwabvi and use our skills to protect the natural wilderness and to help our neighbours around the reserve.”




PAW: Promoting environmental conservation and development in Malawi.