Economic development and environmental preservation often are viewed as opposing interests in political decision-making. With many valuable yet fragile ecosystems, African countries are consistently confronted with the task of improving the lives of their people without jeopardizing the long-term health of the natural resources on which they rely. One effective approach to achieving this objective is building the capacity of communities and individuals to live and work in ways that more sustainably utilize their natural surroundings. In this way, communities and individuals can capitalize on the copious environmental wealth contained in many of the countries on the continent without compromising the integrity of those resources. Connecting long-term stewardship to viable livelihoods and economic development opportunities can promote poverty alleviation and create a deeper environmental awareness among populations.