IFAD / KENYA BIODIVERSITY FOREST

Preview Language:   Original
20-May-2022 00:03:20
Farmers in Kenya are learning to work with nature to improve their livelihoods and adapt to climate change. IFAD

Available Languages: English, Kiswahili
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STORY: IFAD / KENYA BIODIVERSITY FOREST
TRT: 03:20
SOURCE: IFAD
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / KISWAHILI / EMBU / NATS

DATELINE: 09 MAY 2022, NJUKIRI FOREST, EMBU COUNTY, KENYA

SHOTLIST:

1. Various shots, aerial views of Njuriki forest
2. SOUNDBITE (Kiwahili) Simon Kangele Wambua, Chair, Njuriki Forest Association:
“Our work is to plant trees and to prevent soil erosion and factors affecting climate change.”
3. Tracking shot, potatoes growing in amongst the trees
4. SOUNDBITE (Kiswahili) Simon Kangele Wambua, Chair, Njuriki Forest Association:
“What makes this place great for farming is because when the leaves, especially of the indigenous trees, fall it becomes like fertilizer. When farming what we first do is harvesting. We cut down any trees and for 2 years, we grow maize, beans and potatoes. Then after that, we grow trees, and we take care of them very well. The soil here is very friendly to farming.”
5. Various shots, Simon with other farmers who are allowed to farm in the forest
6. Aerial shot, forest
7. SOUNDBITE (Embu) Margaret Wanjeru wa Kiragu- Forest Farmer:
“Since we started farming here, there is a major difference since there are trees, and these trees attract rain so there is a major difference between the main countryside and here. Even if the sun is hot, here we still get food to eat because we have trees and there is rain.”
8. Various shots, Margaret walking in amongst the potato crops in the forest
9. SOUNDBITE (Embu) Margaret Wanjeru wa Kiragu- Forest Farmer:
“The challenges we face from farming in the forest is when wild animals like antelopes or monkeys and we cannot harm them, that is the challenge we face, since we have been told by the forestry department to look after them, they are the reason we are here. The forest belongs to the wild animals, even though animals and humans share it.”
10. Various shots, farmers singing and dancing in the forest
11. Various shots, aerial views of Njuriki forest

STORYLINE:

Farmers in Kenya are learning to work with nature to improve their livelihoods and adapt to climate change.

These trees are a majestic sight on the Kenyan landscape. It is difficult to believe that just 6 years ago the forest of Njukiri did not exist.

A massive planting programme is part of a project funded by the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Governments of Kenya and Spain and has transformed 2,982 hectares of degraded land into a lush green forest.

The area is now home to thousands of different varieties of wildlife, flora and fauna. It also provides an income for local farmers who are allowed to grow crops here, in exchange for taking care of the forest.

The creation of a new forest has given farmers a new role and source of income.

SOUNDBITE (Kiswahili) Simon Kangele Wambua, Chair, Njuriki Forest Association:
“Our work is to plant trees and to prevent soil erosion and factors affecting climate change.”

SOUNDBITE (Kiswahili) Simon Kangele Wambua, Chair, Njuriki Forest Association:
“What makes this place great for farming is because when the leaves, especially of the indigenous trees, fall it becomes like fertilizer. When farming what we first do is harvesting. We cut down any trees and for 2 years, we grow maize, beans and potatoes. Then after that, we grow trees, and we take care of them very well. The soil here is very friendly to farming.”

In the last decade, Kenya, like many countries in East Africa, has been feeling the effects of climate change. Extended drought periods and erratic rainfall during the rainy season has led to crop failures and food shortages for farmers. The new forest has led to higher rainfall in this area compared to the surrounding bare areas. This is because trees contribute to the rain cycle by absorbing moisture and then releasing it into the air.

SOUNDBITE (Embu) Margaret Wanjeru wa Kiragu- Forest Farmer:
“Since we started farming here, there is a major difference since there are trees, and these trees attract rain so there is a major difference between the main countryside and here. Even if the sun is hot, here we still get food to eat because we have trees and there is rain.”

SOUNDBITE (Embu) Margaret Wanjeru wa Kiragu- Forest Farmer:
“The challenges we face from farming in the forest is when wild animals like antelopes or monkeys and we cannot harm them, that is the challenge we face, since we have been told by the forestry department to look after them, they are the reason we are here. The forest belongs to the wild animals, even though animals and humans share it.”

So far, the project has helped more than 1000 farmers to work and make a livelihood in the forest.
The forest is still growing though. There are still another 3500 hectares to plant. Offering more farmers, the opportunity to make a decent living and live in harmony with nature at the same time.

“Building a shared future for all life” is the slogan for this year’s Biodiversity Day. Biodiversity remains the answer to several sustainable development challenges. From nature-based solutions to climate change, nutrition and health issues, food and water security, and sustainable livelihoods, biodiversity is the foundation upon which we can build back better from shocks like the COVID pandemic and the war in Ukraine.

In Kenya they have been putting that slogan into practice. Learning to live and farm alongside local nature and wildlife.
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IFAD
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unifeed220520b
Asset ID
2878077