June 20, 2024

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GREEN GICUMBI: More than 400Ha of forests restored in 18 months after Green Project Launch

After its official launch in October 2019, Green Gicumbi project is commended by the authorities and the community of Gicumbi district for the changes it has brought.

By Justin Kayiranga

According to figures released by Rwanda Green Fund (FONERWA), which is also responsible for implementing the project, it shows that after 18 months since the project was launched, much has been achieved including radical terraces established on 400 ha, progressive terraces established on 410 ha,        17,320 green jobs created, 400 ha of degraded forests rehabilitated and 140 forest owners trained among many other achievements…

Rwiri village in Byumba sector, is one of the places where forests are being rehabilitated.

Citizens in this village, especially those who had old forests, were trained and voluntarily agreed to partner with the Green Gicumbi project in the restoration.

Kagenza Jean Marie Vianney, the project coordinator

Kagenza Jean Marie Vianney, the project coordinator, told Top Africa News that, due to these reforms, they are expecting a 5 times increase of  m3 of forest harvest in a few years.

He said: “Often the people used to harvest their forests prematurely and it resulted in low harvests.”

“At the beginning of the project, we found that they could harvest between 30m3 and 50m3 per hectare, but now with these forests that have been planted, they will get at least 150m3 per hectare.”

Some residents, who have agreed to release their forests to be rehabilitated, say that the project is making a huge difference to their lives as after being trained, they have been given jobs to take care of their forests and getting paid.

Habanabakize Francois is one of these beneficiaries, in his testimony, he says that on the hill where these forests are being rehabilitated, they were struggling to grow trees due to the fact that there has been soil erosion that caused landslides.

But after the starting of the project, they were taught how to trace channel flooding and nowadays their trees are growing faster. “Before, erosion had caused severe damages, and we were unable to grow trees here as the water which was flowing from the city center, came and destroyed them. But through Green Gicumbi, they traced these drainage channels and now we no longer suffer from soil erosion.” Says Habanabakize.

Ndayambaje Felix, the Mayor of Gicumbi district, commends the positive impact brought by this project not only in environment protection but also in social welfare of Gicumbi residents as some of them are getting employed through the project.

Ndayambaje Felix (In the middle), the Mayor of Gicumbi district

He said “We are expecting around 150 thousand of residents to benefit from this project and by now within 18 months since the kick off of the project, more than 18 thousand of residents (at least 1000 residents per month) have already benefited from this project and their lives are changing day by day”

This project, strengthening climate resilience of rural communities in Northern Rwanda, mainly focuses on reducing vulnerability to climate change by enhancing the adaptive capacity of the targeted groups in the project intervention area as well as reducing their exposure to climate risks.

Once it is implemented and achieved, this could add to Rwanda’s Bonn Challenge commitment to restore 2 million ha of degraded forests and landscape.

 

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