Why and when was the CAMPFIRE Association formed?
The CAMPFIRE Association was formed in 1991 to represent the interests of the districts who have communities that live with wildlife, and for them to be fully involved in the management of natural resources. In 1992 the CAMPFIRE Association took the leading role in the co-ordination of CAMPFIRE activities and the representation of the CAMPFIRE within national, regional and international fora.

How is the CAMPFIRE Association Structured?
The CAMPFIRE Association is structured like its member Rural District Councils (RDCs). There is a Board that is made up of elected representatives from the members and is accountable to the General Assembly. The Board directs an executive to carry out its policy decisions. Wildlife producer communities make decisions through CAMPFIRE Wildlife Committees at Village and Ward levels in each district. These committees, depending on local context, are either imbedded in or operate under Village and Ward Development Committee structures. The community is represented in the RDC by an elected Councilor. Each Ward is required to establish a Wildlife Committee to which at least 7 members are elected from the villages located in that ward. 

What are the objectives of the CAMPFIRE Association?
The objectives of the CAMPFIRE Association have evolved over the years with the development of CAMPFIRE. The current objective or vision of the CAMPFIRE Association is:

  • “By 2025, the CAMPFIRE Association will operate as the hub of a sustainable system of community-based natural resource management development partnerships and be recognised as the leading partner to Government in the development and implementation of community directed sustainable development initiatives in Zimbabwe”.
  • In all its activities and operations, the CAMPFIRE Association will facilitate the practice of the philosophy of CAMPFIRE, with its focus on supporting the ability of rural communities to participate in the economy through wise and sustainable use of natural resources.

How is the CAMPFIRE Association funded?
The CAMPFIRE Association depends on multiple sources of funding. These are:

  • Membership fees:
    All RDCS pay an annual membership fee to the CAMPFIRE Association. This was Z$50,000 for 2006 and currently US$300. The Association invoices RDCs in January. Membership fees are passed by the Annual General Meeting of the CAMPFIRE Association.
  • Levies from members:
    Members whose gross CAMPFIRE revenue exceeds US$10,000 per annum pay an annual levy to the CAMPFIRE Association of 4% of total gross CAMPFIRE revenue. The Association receives this income directly from Safari Operators. Where this is not possible, levies are calculated from the bi-annual reports submitted by the RDCs, and invoices are raised on a bi-annual basis (June and December). 
  • Grant funds:
    The CAMPFIRE Association, by itself and in collaboration with partners, develops project proposals for donors funding. Since inception, the Association has received funding from USAID, NORAD, the European Union (EU) and the Department for International Development (UK). CAMPFIRE has also received support from the Ford Foundation, and W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Grant funds have been used for both institutional support of CAMPFIRE and infrastructural development projects at community level.
  • Endowment or Trust Funds:
    The CAMPFIRE Association established the CAMPFIRE Trust in 2010. A Board of Trustees administers the trust independent of the Association.

How does the CAMPFIRE Association use its revenue?
The CAMPFIRE Association uses its membership fees and other revenue to support the interests of its members at national and international levels. This involves working with government on policies that affect natural resource management, liaising with NGOs on supporting natural resources management activities at producer community level and sourcing donor funds to support new initiatives at community level.

How does the CAMPFIRE Association account for its revenue?
Under the Private Voluntary Organisations Act the CAMPFIRE Association is required to produce an audited set of accounts on an annual basis. These are presented by the Chairman at the Annual General Meeting.

Summary
The CAMPFIRE Association is the umbrella association of RDCs implementing CAMPFIRE. The Association receives revenue in the form of membership fees and donor grant funds and, in future, trust funds. The Association uses its revenue to represent and promote the interests of its members at national, regional and international level.