Conservation from 'the people's perspective'
A continent where this intrinsic link between people and nature and environmental protection and sustainable development is increasingly evident is Africa. In the dense forests of the Congo Basin and along the emerald coasts of East Africa, people-centred conservation approaches are helping protect vital natural resources and ecosystems while empowering communities through sustainable livelihood, training and capacity-building opportunities.
In Mozambique, the CARE-WWF Alliance is helping communities restore 106 hectares of critical mangroves which are an important source of timber for fuel and building but also offer protection against storm surges and are home to several fish species, crab and shrimp, a source of protein and income for local communities.
In neighbouring Tanzania, villages around the Ruvuma landscape have seen their annual income from timber harvesting increase by US$ 600,000 through sustainable forest management techniques. WWF support has helped re-establish more than 100,000 hectares of forest and income from timber sales has helped fund schools, water wells and maternity care centres.
In the words of Bright Chiworeka, a bee farmer working on a multipartner project supported by WWF in the Zambezi region in Namibia, “the training, material support and access to markets are helping me realize my dreams of beekeeping to support my family’s needs.” Chiworeka’s honey production has risen from three kilos from three hives in 2013 to 250 kilos from eight hives in 2017, bringing in vital income to pay for his children’s school fees.
Read more stories about how conservation is helping communities and nature thrive together in Africa in Conservation: The People's Perspective available here.