Meet Dr. Faith Thomas Mpondo, Country Coordinator for Tanzania

Our family of National Moth Week Country Coordinators is growing, thanks to
the efforts of Dr. Vijay Barve, our Global Community Facilitator!
 
Meet our newest country coordinator, Dr. Faith Thomas Mpondo of Tanzania,
an East African nation, known for its expansive wildlife areas, such as
Serengeti National Park.
 
Faith is a passionate scientist interested in biodiversity, ecology and
conservation. Her interest in biodiversity started when she was 10 years
old during a visit to Mikumi National Park with her parents.
 
 “I was thrilled to watch zebras in their natural habitat; some were
grazing and others wallowing.”
 
Her passion intensified when she joined the University of Dar es Salaam for
a bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Science and Conservation.
 
“My undergraduate training was truly eye-opening on the importance of
different plant and animal species along with their importance to
humankind,” she said.
 
She participated in a landscape mosaic project in East Usambara, Eastern
Arc mountain, in 2009, where butterfly farming formed an important income
generator for local communities.
 
“I was truly amazed by their beautiful colors, and ever since, I developed
special interests in insects.”
 
Since 2012, Faith has been working as a beekeeping officer with the
Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism (MNRT), where she conducted
several outreach trainings for local communities, secondary and college
students in Tanzania on the importance of pollinator conservation. Faith
has also served as a public speaker in SOAPBOX Science for a ladies event
in Arusha in 2019.
 
She is currently a lecturer at the University of Dodoma in the nation’s
capital, and a member of international scientific organizations, including
the OWSD – Tanzanian Chapter (Organization for Women in Science for the
Developing World). She has also researched insect pollinators in Tanzania,
sponsored by several funders, including Eva Crane Trusts, Royal Belgian
Institute of Natural Sciences (RBINS) and CREATES, Tanzania. Faith has
published several articles on insect pollinator benefits, threats and
conservation in semi-arid areas. She is also serving as a reviewer for some
International Journals.
 
Faith says she first heard about National Moth Week from a colleague during
her internship at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences in
February 2020.
 
“I am more than happy to be joining the National Moth Week as country
coordinator for Tanzania due to my intense passion for insects,” she said.
 
“Raising fellow Tanzanians’ awareness and introducing moth watching will be
a pleasure because of their different values, including intrinsic,
educational, aesthetic, scientific, economic and ecosystem. Moreover, they
are essential insects that should be well known and conserved.”
 
National Moth Week is delighted to welcome Faith as country coordinator for
Tanzania!
 
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