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05 Jul 2022
Peace Parks Foundation recently conducted follow-up training in the application of the Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool (SMART) in Limpopo National Park, the Mozambican component of Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park. Initial basic training had been undertaken by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), another SMART partner.
The follow-up training focused on updating and customising the data model specific to the park’s needs and taking into account the park’s reporting requirements.
Two people were trained as data administrators, who will collate the data and assist in the training of field rangers. Three section rangers were trained in data collection, making use of ruggedized field data tools, and their feedback allowed for refinement of the SMART sequence, to make data collection easier. The park will use the tool in their operations, for law enforcement monitoring and to build a comprehensive database, which will allow for ease of reporting and decision-making. To enable the data collection, Peace Parks Foundation assisted with the setup and configuration of Cedar smartphones for the park.
This training session followed on Mozambique’s decision to incorporate SMART for measuring, evaluating and improving the effectiveness of patrols and site-based conservation activities. The first training session, sponsored by the National Administration of Conservation Areas, and offered by WCS, was held late in 2015.
There will be another session in three months’ time, to ensure that the training has benefited the park and that the subsequent reports contain the correct information.