Project GreenHeart will build the ecological, economic and social value of the Lilongwe Wildlife Centre

The Lilongwe Wildlife Centre (LWC) is Malawi’s only wildlife sanctuary, renowned for its high standards of animal welfare. Set in a beautiful 180-hectare protected nature reserve in the middle of the capital city, the Centre is a critical part of the city’s unique cultural history and increasingly fragile biodiversity. 

We are embarking on an exciting initiative to redevelop LWC’s facilities for both its animal residents and visitors. Supported by a range of donors and partners, Project GreenHeart is part of Lilongwe City Council’s vision to develop an ecological corridor through the heart of the city. It will turn the Centre into a leading eco-tourist destination and build the status of Lilongwe as an emerging green city in Southern Africa.

Project GreenHeart goals

PROTECT WILDLIFE

INSPIRE
YOUTH

SUPPORT LIVELIHOODS

BUILD CAPACITY

SUSTAINABLE BUILDING

PROTECTING WILDLIFE

The LWC supports national wildlife rescue teams, offers a critical lifeline to injured and orphaned animals and provides a solution for authorities confiscating animals from wildlife criminals. Improving crucial facilities – such as the vet clinic and animal enclosures – will further strengthen our capacity for wildlife protection. We are also aiming to improve wildlife welfare by reducing visitor pressure on the sanctuary areas and offering alternative opportunities for people to get closer to nature. Project GreenHeart will also conserve an important green space within a rapidly urbanising city, improving forestry management within the nature reserve, safeguarding habitats for wildlife and providing other vital ecosystem services.

INSPIRING YOUTH  

A pioneering new education zone will serve as a gold-standard facility for inspiring the next generation of environmentalists within Malawi. The LWC is uniquely positioned to act as the country’s leading facility for conservation education. Each year the Centre welcomes thousands of school groups to learn more about the environment. To date, our environmental education programme has reached over 175,000 school children across Malawi.

SUPPORTING LIVELIHOODS

Project GreenHeart will support local livelihoods through employment, supplier and partner opportunities. It will also strengthen the site’s status as a key destination for domestic and international tourism. Sales through the on-site gift shop will also support local artisans and green entrepreneurs.

BUILDING CAPACITY

Improved facilities for research, citizen science, wildlife rehabilitation and veterinary medicine will open up sector-leading training and development opportunities for international and Malawian students and professionals.

SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION

The redevelopment will act as a model for environmentally sustainable development. All builds will seek to diminish the impact on existing natural assets while new architectural interventions will use materials such as rammed earth, soil stabilised blocks and improved natural air circulation and lighting to reduce energy requirements.

Key elements

Project GreenHeart will develop key facilities including: a new education centre, visitor hub, volunteer facilities, botanic garden, nature trails and canopy walk; improved sanctuary facilities; enhanced recycling; forestry management; and much more.

Below is the plan for the new site. The full Project GreenHeart Master Plan is available to partners and supporters.

How you can help

We are seeking support from individuals and organisations to help us realise our vision. If you would like to be part of this exciting project and play a role in building a safer, greener Malawi, please get in touch at comms@lilongwewildlife.org. We’d love to explore ideas with you.

There are a number of ways you can support us.

Girls looking ahead in classroom

Make a donation

We welcome donations from individuals and companies. You can also sponsor specific elements of the redevelopment, with branding and recognition opportunities.

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Provide in-kind support

Contribute building materials and technical assistance.

Blue monkey face close up

Spread the word

Share our plans with others and introduce us to potential supporters.

Chicko - Animal Care attendant

Share your views

Let us know what you would like to see and experience at the Lilongwe Wildlife Centre.

Project GreenHeart donors & partners

GIZ Polifund
International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW)