"Wildlife has fascinated me for as long as I can remember.  In the vast savannahs of Africa there is a dimension of space and time that is an echo of our own beginnings and which reminds us that we were not born initially to live in the concrete jungle.

For more than twenty-five years I have counted Kenya as a second home and high on the slopes of old Kirinyaga, the sacred mountain of the Kikuyu tribe, Mount Kenya.  I can watch the sun slide over the Aberdare Mountains within sound of the call of the jackal and the leopard.

Interest in Africa’s wildlife has grown tremendously since the Second World War.  To a first-time visitor there is magic at night when every tree becomes an elephant and every rock a rhino. In most National Parks there are lodges where these animals parade under the light of electric moons. Now, every night, thousands enjoy Kenya’s spotlit wildlife show at salt licks and water holes outside hotels in many of the nation’s 39 national parks and reserves. 

Throughout the nation, Kenya’s Wildlife and Conservation Management Department deploys a large staff, most of them in the field as wardens, rangers and anti-poaching specialists.

Like its people, the land is characterized by diversity.  Kenya is a world in miniature for within its boundaries exist almost every type of known landform from snow mountain and glacier to true desert.

With twenty mountain peaks rising above 6,500 feet and five great massifs rising more than 10,000 feet, Kenya is studded with lakes which glimmer silver in the early morning sun.  Its borders fall in the waters of Africa’s largest lake, Victoria, and eight major rivers more than 200 kilometres long include impressive waterfalls of which one, high in the Aberdare Mountains, is almost 1,000 feet deep.

A ribbon of green along Nairobi’s central Uhuru Park, Central Park, the University campus playing field and the Chiromo Forest.  A tree-lined golf course is only a par-three distance the nation’s Parliament. 

Nairobi’s growth since Kenya’s independence has been phenomenal.  The Coast-Nairobi pipeline is a blessing for it has ended the dangerous convoys that used to transport fuel by road to the capital.  The herds of game which used to graze within sight of the road gradually slipped away into the depths of Tsavo.  Now the wildlife is returning and antelope and buffalo are frequently seen by motorists.  The old faded signs are being renewed.  They warn: BEWARE!  ELEPHANTS HAVE RIGHT OF WAY.

I have been fortunate enough to count Kenya as my home for a great number of years and have come to love its untouched wilderness beauty and to find in its wide open spaces something of the harmony and equilibrium reflected in the nomads who roam the north."

Excerpts from Journey Through Kenya
Introduction by William Holden


"Although William Holden's illustrious acting career spanned over 40 years, and included nearly 80 films plus a coveted Oscar for STALAG 17, the role in which he took the most pride was as a conservationist and co-founder of the Mount Kenya Game Ranch. His dedicated efforts to preserve the wildlife so precious to all of us soon expanded through out the world, as he instilled in everyone he touched a reverence for nature's creatures.

In his memory, I founded the William Holden Wildlife Foundation, in cooperation with his former partners, to carry on his important efforts and to meet the ever-increasing demand for alternatives to extinction. The foundation's education program currently serves over 10,000 students per year. Overhead expenses in the United States are underwritten through the generosity of a single donor, ensuring that virtually 100% of your tax-deductible donation goes directly to our work.

Learn more about us at

Stefanie Powers
WHWF President

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Last Updated Aug. 29, 2017