Community bylaws improve landscape management

An artist’s impression of a Kapchorwa landscape.

An artist’s impression of a Kapchorwa landscape.

Experience from Uganda shows that when villages and districts create regulations to manage forests and restoration, benefits flow.

Through collective awareness of land-management challenges at the grassroots level, governments and others are effectively coerced to make policy responses for the protection of land and natural resources in a landscape, benefiting humans and the environment. Furthermore, approaching these issues through a Landcare mindset is critical for sustainability.

Read more on the World Agroforestry Blog

Conectando al mundo y sus bosques.

FAO, IUFRO, INBAR, WRI, IIED, FSC, WWF, SGS, Working on Fire  y muchas organizaciones más se han reunido para compartir sus aprendizajes, sus éxitos y sobre todos los siguientes pasos en el trabajo que tienen en los bosques del mundo. 6 años han pasado desde el encuentro en Argentina ahora, el XIV Congreso Forestal Mundial es en Sudáfrica.

Bosques y personas: Invirtiendo en un un futuro sostenible. El lema del congreso nos expresa la relevancia que tienen los bosques para el mundo, para nuestro futuro.

Continue reading

Small Country, Big on Forestry Governance

Gorilla mother and child in Volcanoes National Park

Gorilla mother and child in Volcanoes National Park

By any standard, Rwanda is one of the smallest countries in the world with an area of only 26,338 square kilometers (10,169 square miles) according to the United Nations Statistics Division. According to 2015 figures, more than 12 million people call Rwanda home or 472.5 people per square kilometer – ranking it 24th amongst world nations for population density.

Continue reading

“Working on Fire”: the life of a single mother


“Working on Fire” (WoF) was launched in September 2003 as part of the South African Government’s initiative to create jobs and to alleviate poverty. Today WoF employs more than 5,000 young men and women who have been fully trained as veld and forest fire fighters. They are stationed in more than 200 teams throughout South Africa.

I am one of them.

Continue reading

Are we confusing information with communication?


On our fourth day of the World Forestry Congress, the word from communicators in the halls in Durban is: enough of the overly packed PPTs and the one-way presentations – we need to improve our communications to build new and real understanding on how we will sustain forests for people, and inspire positive action.

One of the most popular plenary sessions at WFC so far – If trees could talk – explored exactly this topic: how can we improve our communication on forests? How can we move beyond ‘presenting information’ and toward ‘communicating’ to achieve our objectives to sustain forests?

Read more on the “Trees That Talk” blog

How Kriengkrai Cheechaung and fellow indigenous persons made it to a global forests meeting


The RECOFTC members at the World Forestry Congress

The voices of rural and forest-dwelling communities—the true stewards of the world’s forests—must be heard in the urgent debate on the future of the world’s forests.

But bringing people from these areas to international meetings where forests are discussed is not an easy undertaking. Most members of such communities live in remote areas far from airports, may be averse to travel, and often, they do not speak international languages.

RECOFTC, The Center for People and Forests, is one of the organizations that sponsored a group of indigenous people to the World Forestry Congress (WFC 2015), currently underway in Durban. Caroline Liou, Communications Manager of RECOFTC, was involved in the process.

Continue reading

Youth play their part in conserving forests in Africa

Indigenous afrotemperate forest growing in a river valley. Western Cape South Africa

Indigenous forest in Western Cape, South Africa

Advocating forestry and conservation may sound boring to many young people who often lack ambition and know nothing but the latest hip-hop songs or latest trends in fashion. However, for Eric Ogallo from Kenya and Kiki Tassi from Togo, it is a different story. The two young men teach rural communities how to conserve their forests. They both attended the World Forestry Congress in Durban this week.

Twenty-five year old Ogallo is part of a youth-led non-governmental organization working in the forests of the central highlands of Kenya. “We want to rehabilitate the area by using the youth and their innovations, so that they can create solutions to livelihoods and forestry management issues,” he said.

Continue reading

A drum, a bear and rowdy crowd


A loud, warm sound of drums was heard through the ICC corridors as the group of African drummers invited people to the communications session during the XIV World Forestry Congress. As primitive as the drums seemed, but they were very effective – loud and clear in sending the message across!

The value of communications and its potential in promoting forestry is under estimated. Strong dialogue, imagination and innovation are needed at all levels to engage audiences better.

Continue reading

Fire fighters stand as one to say “No to deforestation”


Working on fire, firefighters controlling a forest fire

Men and women firefighters work in the frontlines of saving lives and protecting the environment.

As the XIV World Forestry Congress kicked off this morning in Durban, hundreds of firefighters from around the country stood as one to say an emphatic “No” to any form of deforestation that destroys the environment.”

Continue reading