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Our Work

TANZANIA: Training Addresses Environmental Conservation

Current Project

Project Overview

Anticipated lives impacted: 2,440 (Low-income farmers, their families, and community leaders)

Grant amount: $65,747 (Cost per beneficiary: $26.95)

Project Status:
This project is in the second half of implementation. We will post a final evaluation once it is completed.

Approved by the ARDF Global Trustees: November 2016

Project Description

Mass deforestation is a serious problem in the Kagera region of Tanzania. Eighty percent of Tanzanians rely on agriculture for their livelihood, and this has partially worsened soil conditions and led to deforestation. Previously, the government had given farmers seedlings to plant, but the farmers’ insufficient training oftens causes the trees to die.

This project will train farmers in 20 villages about the importance of reforestation. Two people from each village (one religious leader and one village leader) will receive extensive training in environmental conservation, learning about new farming techniques and creating a sense of ownership for the project. These 40 leaders will return to their villages and select 100 community members to be trained as nursery managers. They will learn how to produce seedlings, plant and care for trees, control weeds, and manage fires. Each community will be expected to plant at least 500 trees. A million trees will be planted in Kagera as a result of this project! The diocese will work with the government’s environmental department to ensure that the newly planted trees are properly maintained.

Leaders will also introduce the community to energy-saving stoves that make them less dependent on firewood for cooking. These stoves use 60 percent less firewood and produce 80 percent less smoke and soot. One important result is that women, who typically collect the firewood, will have more time for other activities. A total of 2,000 people (based on the average of five family members for each of the 400 families) will gain a healthier lifestyle, while the entire Kagera community will benefit from environmental conservation.

In their own words:

“I joined the reforestation project in 2012 after going through a life with no hope. I used to spend all my day drinking beer and I was not even able to provide for my family. It’s not that I did not want to provide [for them], but I had no means…When the tree planting training was done in my village, I…decided to participate in all the trainings. I encouraged my family members to join me and we planted 500 trees that year. Now it is a source of income for my family.” — Herman Ndala of Ibuga village, Ngara, Tanzania

Read the full report on the project here, or download a summary here.

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