23 Nov 2016
Community Ecosystem Management Project (CEMP) in the Atewa Range Forest Reserve in Ghana
Collaborative Management of the Atewa Range Forest Reserve in Ghana for Co-Benefits of Conservation and Enhancement of Livelihoods
Scaling Up Actions for the Conservation and Livelihood Support Arrangements for Securing Atewa Forest Reserve
This project aims to build on results of previously funded projects by Rufford to escalate conservation efforts through enhanced awareness creation products and channels, intensifying and focusing the livelihoods skills development of people and forest buffer creation to generate evidence to support national discourse to protect the reserve.
Two previously funded Rufford Foundation projects enabled the assessment and valuation of ecosystem services of Atewa Range Forest Reserve and an evaluation of its important contribution to the life and well-being of several thousands of people. As a result of the assessment, complimentary awareness creation tools and knowledge materials were produced and used to raise the level of consciousness of fringe communities on conservation and sustainable use of the reserve and also developed skills of inhabitants to improve their livelihoods and reduce pressure relative to extraction of goods from the reserve.
This project builds on this by taking advantage of the keen interest of community members by expanding the awareness creation and skills development to contribute to the long term drive to sustainably manage Atewa and its resources for continuous flow of ecosystem services and benefits to present and future generations. This will be achieved through three outcome products.
Outcome 1: National policy discourse steered in favour of elevating the status of the reserve to a national park and consequently leading to improved conservation of the area.
This will directly translate into preparing position papers and presenting them at workshops, participating in expert meetings and linking directly with other actors in the sector including the Forestry Commission, NGO AROCHA-Ghana and others to provide context and content on the lessons learned from the implementation of the project to inform decision making and influence policy.
Outcome 2: Communities in particular and citizens in general have enhanced awareness of the conservation values of Atewa and what and how they will take steps to conserve the area or sustainably utilize its benefits.
This outcome will be achieved through the re-packaging of the awareness material into audio files in local language so that it can be used through community radio and other mass media platforms at the community level in order to reach more people. Through a schools’ quiz competition awareness will continue to be created among pupils.
Outcome 3: Communities engage in sustainable alternative livelihoods taking advantage of the conservation of the area to improve their incomes and improve their living standards and create buffer zone around forest reserve.
The project will firm up and escalate the skills development of community members so that they can engage in sustainable livelihood options. Additionally, the project will procure and distribute additional tree seedlings to augment the community nursery to create buffer areas.