Warkolor Jungle Lodge & Reserve Opens in Western Liberia with U.S. Support

The Warkolor Jungle Lodge & Reserve opened its doors during a grand opening event attended by key dignitaries. This nine-room ecolodge and 1,844-hectare protected area is the product of a publicprivate partnership between Liberia’s Forestry Development Authority (FDA) and Libassa Ecolodge made possible with funding from the U.S. Government through its Agency for International Development (USAID).

Acting Minister of Information Johnny Tarkpah represented the President of Liberia at the opening ceremony. U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires Catherine Rodriguez praised the project, stating that “partnerships like this one can help to mitigate climate change, ensure a conducive environment for ecotourism, and create many new employment opportunities for surrounding communities.”

FDA Managing Director Rudolph J. Merab thanked Libassa Ecolodge for realizing a long-held dream of showcasing Liberia’s natural beauty. Warkolor Lodge runs on a bed and breakfast model, offering guests a range of amenities. It features a conference room, a serene swimming pool, a restaurant, and a lively bar.

The lodge is powered by a 40kVa solar electricity power plant, ensuring an eco-friendly operation with a minimal carbon footprint. During its construction, the project provided jobs for over 100 workers. Now, it promises to create 40 permanent hospitality jobs, bringing lasting benefits to the community. Rudolph Antoune, owner of Warkolor and co-founder of Libassa Ecolodge, said, “The Warkolor Jungle Lodge & Reserve is now the largest employer and principal taxpayer in Robertsport.”

In August 2021, USAID and Libassa Ecolodge entered into a $1.1 million co-investment agreement to construct the Warkolor Jungle Lodge and Reserve. Libassa contributed $850,000, while USAID provided $260,000. This partnership aims to enhance ecotourism, preserve national heritage, and create sustainable jobs.

The Warkolor Jungle Lodge Partnership underscores the importance of private sector investment in enhancing Liberia’s ecotourism sector. Paramount Chief of the Commonwealth District, Mr. Haji Sombali, expressed gratitude, saying, “We are happy that it has come to fruition because it will benefit the future of our children.”

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