My name is Peter Towett. I grew up in Nairobi where the allure of the wild was always beckoning, in a family of five siblings. I never really learned what it meant to just be a kid. And I certainly never learned how to relate to other children.
Accustomed to being around adults, I was always mature for my age. Even my own friends often annoyed me during my adolescent years. I did well in school, often knowing how to do complex math problems before the concept had even been introduced to our class. Looking back, I’m sure I was quite smug, although I didn’t realize it at the time. Unfortunately, self-awareness wasn’t something I learned until many years later.
In high school, I began to tire of the pressure placed on me by my family and their high expectations. I gradually stopped my extra-curricular activities, including athletics and art lessons, and chose to work instead. I graduated at the top of my class, although I wasn’t valedictorian—perhaps because I didn’t want to give my overbearing family the satisfaction.
In college, I was involved in a few outside activities. I was tourism club patron, pledged a fraternity and even served as its president, but only after several of my sisters convinced me I’d be great at it. I visited Nairobi National Park – that opened my eyes to the beauty of the vast reaches of the wilderness.
After college I joined a safari company. While working for this company I had a chance to visit Tsavo East National Park where the DSWT elephant orphanage release stockades are; this was my first time to touch an elephant. They were so amazing and also close to humans. Another job came through a friend Joseph Njoroge “Mole” who introduced me to Lori Bergemann, who heads Amara Conservation.
I started working part time in 2005. Now, after working for many years as part-time job for this organization and part time doing safari work, I had a family and needed a full time job, which led me to Dubai as there were no good jobs in Kenya.
Having worked there for five months, Amara Conservation offered me a permanent job so I came back to work to conserve our environment. This was a blessing because I wanted to be back to what I love and have a passion for doing, and I would be near my young family and my colleague Jacob, whom I had found to have a similar approach and passion for conservation.
Jacob and I have been working in the field doing awareness through film shows, which is Amara’s Conservation objective. We get to meet other people who also have a passion and I am thrilled that there are more who are willing to go the extra mile to salvage our wonderful heritage. The unique skill set in our “education for conservation” program is rare to find, and I am sure Amara Conservation will achieve it’s goals and enable the communities bordering and around the parks to become the epitome of preservation.