|Categories||Communities, Forests, People|
|Date||10 Aug 2015|
The Kaporo Foundation Commutrust is establishing a Forest Reserve of extincting indigenous species of trees in 100 hectares of land in Village Headman Mwakifwamba of Karonga district in Malawi. Karonga is one of the districts in Malawi where deforestation is high due to wood harvesting for firewood, timber, charcoal, brick burning, and for construction of local houses.
As a project we honor the plight of Men, Women and Youths who are involved in deforestation for one reason or another. We recognize their need for survival hence their willingness to work physically thus cutting down trees to sell as timber, firewood, charcoal or brick burning. Having understood this as a common ground, the project seeks to educate them on the manifold benefits of conserving forest environment to initiate a mental paradigm shift that will empower them with the passion to conserve their environment and search for alternative dignified eco-friendly sources of making a living.
This work emanates from chief Mwakifwamba’s laments and long sort solution towards helping his people involved in deforestation and the desire to preserve environment. Both Men and women including youths are making a living out of the malpractice in which they burn charcoal, harvest hardwood trees for timber, clear any large tree for fuel-wood and brick burning. This has rendered our hills bare with few shrubs from stumps while our streams are dry and river-beds have risen due to heavy soil erosion and siltation.
The project has capitalized on the most precious community resource by engaging the culprits who are destroying the forest ecosystem by empowering them with environmental conservation knowledge, entrepreneurship skills and alternative eco-friendly entrepreneur projects of their choice. This project is meant in a way to counteract the seemingly absolute generational poverty cycle among the involved Men, Women and Youths in this village by honoring their natural environment.
There is a deliberate initiative to use the knowledge, skills and expertise of the villagers in all the stages of the life cycle of this project in order to imbue a sense of full ownership of the project hence the need to take an active role in the process.
In conclusion we hope that the aforementioned strategies in our project will curtail illegal practices of deforestation in our community, empowered the culprits’ livelihood and help establish a well-managed 100 hectares of a forest reserve within Mwakifwamba village.
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