ESAPN, the Eastern and Southern African Pastoralists Network, is a space for dialogue and coordination of Eastern and Southern African Pastoralistts, and for the generation of ideas for effective advocacy of pastoralist interests.
The network is made of organizations and Civil Society movements that represent the pastoralist livestock keepers. These pastoralists are the ones in charge of performing political action and representation in press, national and international forums. Pastoralists are also supported by a collective of technical experts that support and reinforce the political representation discourses through an objective collaboration that is nevertheless voluntary and therefore a compromise. This compromise is the main value of the network members.
The origin of ESAPN as a stable collective traces back to the Kiserian Global Gathering of Pastoralists in December 2013, where the assembly of the global network of pastoralists issued a mandate to establish regional pastoralist networks. Two years later, in January 2016, and with the support of FAO's Pastoralist Knowledge Hub and a project of IFAD implemented by VSF, the Lukenya meeting to the south of Nairobi consolidated the group and set the basis for the constitution of the network, that was finally possible a year and a half later in Arusha. The network has counted all this time with the invaluable support of CELEP, a network of technical experts on Eastern African pastoralism.
While the network's members represent the major pastoralist networks of the Eastern African region at national level, the aim of the network is to support and consolidate a much needed pastoralist movement in Southern Africa.