Institute for Culture and Ecology ( ICE )

Strengthening traditional Governance in Kiambu

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

The project will be implemented in Lara division of Kiambu district in Kenya. The target forest is the Gitoro block of Mt. Kenya forest in Meru, a section of 50 hectares. Trees will be planted on Ameru communal lands in Kamburu, Kagwe, Kagaa and Mtimbei administrative areas.

A key problem is that as elders lose respect from and commitment to the community, so the social structure for communal responsibility and environmental governance is getting weaker. Also local indigenous tree biodiversity has virtually disappeared, thereby threatening the ecological balance of the area, traditional health practices and the food security of the local communities.

However there is an ongoing `back to roots` programme which seeks to uphold inter-generational learning and there remain potent sources of knowledge on indigenous biodiversity and traditional practices. There is also a large amount of reforestable communal land containing valuable sources of water where indigenous tree nurseries can be established. To see a film made on the work of ICE click here (opens a new window).

Encroachment on Aberdare forest, with illegal settlement and cultivation in the forest. Photo: © ICE