The Community Wildlife Management Areas Consortium (CWMAC) is an umbrella organization for all Authorised Associations (AAs) that manage Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) in Tanzania. As such, CWMAC is a critical organization in the context of wildlife policy and governance in Tanzania. It plays an important role in representing community wildlife managers and their village-level constituents, giving these rural and often underrepresented groups a voice. In addition, CWMAC serves as a platform for information and best practices sharing; for collective action on policy and governance issues across WMAs; and for linking WMAs with other civil society networks, organizations, development partners, and private investors.
The WMA model has its roots in the poaching crisis in the 1980s that provoked government and others, including USAID, to promote the concept of Community-Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM). WMAs emerged during the 1990s as a new legal framework for communities to protect, manage and benefit from wildlife and other natural resources on village land outside of Protected Areas. WMAs are mandated to do this by conducting anti-poaching activities and managing tourism investment processes.
The model was innovative within Tanzania when the first WMAs were gazetted in 2007 and has subsequently been expanded, with 22 functioning with user rights and 16 in development by 2016. WMAs mainly border government protected conservation areas and are located in important landscapes and ecosystems within Tanzania.
Core purpose Values.
1. To improve the legal and policy framework, to allow for financially viable WMAs. This objective aims to ensure WMAs have the ability to make themselves competitive and attractive to potential investors. To achieve this objective CWMAC will:
2. To develop effective governance and management systems within WMAs. Build upon existing work and work collaboratively. CWMAC will work to achieve this objective in two ways:
3. To strengthen partnerships and collaborations to increase the sustainability of CWMAC and its member associations. CWMAC will work to achieve this objective in three ways: