Senegal and Gambia
During two Climate Fund projects in the Landscape of the Year Senegal/the Gambia and in northern Senegal nearly 5,000 fruit trees were planted since 2018. Both projects included awareness raising activities and ongoing support of the population for securing good care and growing conditions for the trees. Four years after the first trees were planted, the first fruit was harvested by the women of the villages. Tree-sponsorships shall guarantee continuous support of the project regions and an expansion of the initiative to other villages.
When trees are planted in Africa, it benefits not only Africa but also Europe. Let us plant for our planet and for a good future for all people!
Mamadou Mbodji, President of the Naturefriends Africa network and Vice-President of NFI
Your Climate Fund donation enables:
- Planting of at least 3,500 trees per year
- Awareness raising for climate and nature protection
- Continuous support of the participating women and families
- Capacity building in tree-care, harvesting, processing, and marketing of fruit
- Educational activities for children/young people
The planting of fruit trees goes along with many ecological, social, and economic benefits. The involvement of local people – especially the women who are traditionally responsible for gardening – is a key factor for successful implementation and starts with awareness-raising activities followed by the joint selection of locations for the trees in the vicinity of the families’ homes. Once planted, the trees are handed over to the families, who are responsible for taking care, such as watering the seedlings and protecting them from goats and other grazing animals.
Thanks to tree plantings, women can strengthen their role in their families and in the local communities, e.g., by providing tasty fruit and by building capacities in tree care, healthy nutrition, and proceeding and marketing of fruit. Selling parts of the fruit enables them to contribute to the family income.
Continuous mentoring of the participating women and families is an essential pillar of the initiative. The natural conditions in the project regions are inherently difficult and are becoming increasingly extreme due to human-made global warming, resulting in periods of extreme heat and long-lasting drought, as well as occasionally heavy rainfall with severe flooding, and erosion and degradation of the soils. In consequence, not all young trees survive and an average of 30 % need to be replanted.
Tree sponsorships are intended to enable an expansion of tree planting with necessary replanting, the implementation of educational activities and the involvement of more families and villages.
All villages are visited by the project teams of Senegalese and Gambian Naturefriends at least twice a year. Each visit includes capacity-building activities ensuring that locals take good care of the trees and understand the basic principles of climate change and how to contribute to climate protection. Once the trees produce fruit, additional trainings on how to process and sell the fruit are foreseen.
Educational activities for children and young people, teaching them about climate change and the importance of trees and of taking care of natural resources, are another important module.
To enable the continuous support of the project regions and an expansion of the initiative, a long-term perspective with annual funding of at least 9,500 euros is foreseen.
Tree-sponsorships with regular payments are an important pillar for the success of the initiative. As little as 10 euros per month enable a concrete contribution to climate justice with benefits for the people in the project regions who are particularly affected by climate change.
The following schemes are proposed:
- 10 euros per month to finance the planting of at least 40 fruit trees per year and the accompanying awareness-raising and training.
- 15 euros per month to finance the planting of at least 60 fruit trees per year and the accompanying awareness-raising and training.
- 30 euros per month to finance the planting of at least 120 fruit trees per year and the accompanying awareness-raising and training.
- 50 euros per month to finance the initiative for an entire village with the planting of at least 200 fruit trees annually.
A tree-sponsorship offers the opportunity to make a personal contribution to more climate justice and to sustainably improve the living conditions of people in the project regions.
Andrea Lichtenecker, Executive Director of Naturefriends International