The EDGE of Existence programme invests in conservation at a grass-roots level by helping aspiring conservationists in developing countries to take the lead in researching and conserving their local EDGE species.
One of the most effective ways in which the EDGE of Existence programme is working to secure the future of EDGE species is by helping to build conservation capacity in regions in which they occur. This is achieved though awarding two-year Fellowships to future conservation leaders (“EDGE Fellows”) working on poorly-known EDGE species.
The EDGE Fellows programme aims to create a new global network of in-country conservationists trained in cutting-edge wildlife management techniques and well-equipped to design and implement a project for a local EDGE species.
EDGE Fellows follow a comprehensive two-year training programme designed to equip them with the tools to become successful conservation leaders.
The programme comprises:
- A 4-week Conservation Tools training course at the beginning of the programme to provide Fellows with essential training in techniques to plan and implement their project
- A grant to undertake a 2-year project on a top-priority EDGE species
- Ongoing technical support/mentoring (achieved via online modules, web-based tutorials/seminars, and field visits) throughout the Fellowship
- A 2-week Conservation Leadership training course in London on successful completion of Fellowship to help Fellows prepare for the next stage of their career
Since 2007, the Programme has supported 58 EDGE Fellows in 33 countries including Haiti, Mongolia, China, Liberia, Kenya, India, Mexico, Croatia, Cameroon and Vietnam. EDGE has helped Fellows to achieve some fantastic conservation successes from large scale habitat restoration to leading on national conservation strategies and even discovering new species.