Nkarya Bukaya

Community protection of Tharaka Forest

This project is a beneficiary of the Gaia/African Biodiversity Network Micro-Projects Fund.

Tharaka forest is a highly biodiverse and critical watershed area for the surrounding communities in Meru, Eastern Province, Kenya. It has been found to contain more than 30 prehistoric sites, however is being threatened due to general degradation as a result of human activity resulting from either extremely low income levels or limited transfer of community knowledge to the younger generation.

The Elders recognise these sites play a vital role for their communities and as all but one are located on river banks it will be easier to grow and maintain trees, while advocacy and lobbying work can be carried out to gain support for tree-planting in larger areas.

The project will involve organisation members, traditional elders and a youth forum. The Forestry and Environment departments will be consulted throughout the process. Activities will include community meetings, purchase and planting of indigenous tree seedlings and maintenance of trees planted.

Nkaria Bukaya staff with examples of trees to be planted at the various forest sites. Photo: © Nkarya Bukaya