Apart from its mining operations in Kalumbila district, FQM Trident Ltd promotes biodiversity conservation in the surrounding area of operation. Among the animals frequently encountered by the staff, residents and community are snakes; for this reason, the mine, through its Wildlife and Forestry support and in collaboration with Helping Hands in Snake Safety has embarked on raising awareness of snake safety, identification, snakebite first aid and snake handling.
FQM Trident lead for Wildlife and Forestry Conservation Doctor David Squarre says the training is meant for the entire mine workforce, medical personnel, residents and school children. He said the training will subsequently promote the conservation of snakes and safety in the area. The training is also meant to be a Training of Trainers for a few identified community members to continue with community awareness.
HHiSS national coordinator Marcel van Driel says the series of snake handling training courses and school talks will also highlight the legal and policy framework for the conservation of snakes and snakebite management as a neglected tropical disease. He said after this training the participants can recognise the common harmless snake species and all the dangerous snakes of the area and also know what to do in case of a snake encounter, how to keep snakes away and the importance of snakes.