Alemayehu working in his field
Making communities stewards of their forests is the only way we know to protect and restore forests in the long term. The region of Amhara in Ethiopia is under severe threat from land degradation and soil erosion as a result of widespread deforestation: its forests are highly fragmented and extensive gullies also threaten agricultural land and settlements. WeForest helps the rural communities counter unsustainable forest use by providing them with training and involving them in forest restoration and protection.
Meet Alemayehu, a 40 year-old farmer who lives in the Lay Damot Kebele village together with his wife and four children. He was selected for our train-the-trainer program to learn about integrated land and forest rehabilitation. He is now able to train the other farmers in agro-forestry.
Alemayehu learned, for example, that coffee trees best thrive when they are protected by the shade from other trees. Last year, he planted 200 Coffee arabica trees together with 150 Cordia africana and Albezia gummifera trees.
Alemayehu also planted Rhamnus prinoides, a shrub that offers Ethiopian farmers a valuable source of income and is also useful for domestic use. The extract from rhamnus stems is used as medicine and in the brewing of tella, an Ethiopian beer. Its leaves are pounded into flour and sold. Alemayehu proudly said: “My coffee and rahmnus trees provide me with an additional income to cover my family’s health expenses and education costs.”
Thanks to your support, we can provide even more training to farmers like Alemayehu and keep adding to more than 1.2 million trees we have already planted in the Amhara region. These trees directly restore more than 600 hectares of forest, which are estimated to positively impact 8 500 hectares of land - bringing benefits to people, ecosystems and climate.
Staff in the community-led training center
Farmers participate in a training on tree planting