Reforest native trees, empower women healers

by Wild Forests and Fauna
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Reforest native trees, empower women healers
Our farmers with their growing trees
Our farmers with their growing trees

Climate week is this week, and it couldn't have come at a more auspicious time. We've seen our Earth up in flames over the past few months, as if the Earth is speaking to us the only way she knows how, urging us to take action to protect our planet if we want to continue to inhabit it. It started with the ferocious fires in the Amazon, but happening congruently are the fires in the Congo Basin in central Africa. 

Greta Thunberg, the 16 year-old climate crisis activist, has taken the world by storm by saying unapologetically what most people are shy at admitting: what we face is not just climate change, it is climate crisis. We are living amidst the fifth mass extinction occuring on the planet we inhabit. The last mass extinction was during the reign of dinosaurs, and the extinction was largely caused by an asteroid. This time, the asteroid is us: our species has taken for granted the delicate balance of ecosystems that keeps us, and everything around us, living. 

But, Greta Thunberg, as well as many climate scientists, and the thousands of people that are doing small-in-scope but massive-in-impact eco-restoration projects, are firm in the conviction that while yes, what we are facing is a crisis and we must stop sugar-coating that fact, we also have a chance to save what we have. 

That's where our work comes in. Study after study shows that our best weapon in the fight against the climate crisis is not some high-tech technology. Rather, it is the support of advancing what nature does best: growing and regenerating itself. One way we can do this is the planting of trees in a way that mimics the natural growth of ecosystems. 

For us, this is not new. In northern Uganda, we have been at the forefront of planting trees to mimic the natural Ugandan landscape: giving the ecosystem a little boost to restore itself. We were planting native trees at a time when it wasn't yet 'cool,' and before it was common knowledge that native tree species has more of an impact in guaranteeing crop harvests and soil restoration and the creation of microclimates that ensure rain fall. We're happy that this low-tech, high-impact solution is consider 'cool' now, and that farmers and organizations and governments alike are all hopping on board to utilize agroforestry, biomimicry and 'smart reforestation' to give our earth a chance. 

And as for us? We will never stop in our mission to spread the ecosystem-saving solutions that agroforestry, agroecology and tree planting provides to landcspes across the globe. 

Our team on the ground in Uganda continues to conduct climate change adaptation programs to the people affected the most by the climate crisis: small scale farmers that depend on the land they till for their livelihood and the wellbeing of their villages. Our team on the ground continues to distribute important tree seedlings to farmers throughout the region, while providing important follow-up to ensure those trees are growing happily and healthily in their new homes. Our team on the ground continues to preach what we believe is a worthy gospel: our Earth is the only home we have, and we must restore it to ensure that the millions of species, including our own, can continue to exist. 

So, this climate week, we encourage you to do everything in your power to take the climate crisis seriously, and to take the necessary steps to live a sustainable and regenerative life. 

Agroforestry and tree planting in the tropics is our most powerful tool to mitigate the climate crisis. Support us, and small organizations like us, to make croplands more resilient, and give the power back to the smallscale farmers that are doing the gruntwork of keeping our planet healthy. 

With love from Northern Uganda to you,

The Native Seeds Project

Agroforestry in Action - African Mahogany
Agroforestry in Action - African Mahogany
Farmers cropland with 2-yearold trees
Farmers cropland with 2-yearold trees
Adding local trees to the landscape
Adding local trees to the landscape
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Time to Plant!
Time to Plant!

The rainy season has arrived in northern Uganda; that means it’s time to plant!

 

 

The Native Seeds project staff have been busy prepping seedlings, training farmers, and getting those seedlings out to farmers. 

 

So far this year we’ve already distributed tree seedlings in 17 villages, including villages from a new sub-county we’ve recently expanded to: Unyama. Unyama neighbors Bungatira sub-county where most of our work has been, and we’re excited to grow our seedling planting footprint in the area!

 

Training this year is focused on two primary areas:

 

1. Climate change adaptation trainings

2. Tree care and management trainings

 

We’ve added 900 new farmers to our program this year, most of which have already received their training and have received their first round of seedlings. We’ve already distributed 30,000 seedlings to farmers, and we plan on getting 70,000 more over the coming months!

 

 

The need for this work is only increasing as recent reports show 45 million people across Africa are set to face detrimental food insecurity soon due to years of compounding droughts in many areas while other areas have faced massive flooding…both of which are the result of climate change. This goes to show the impact programs like Native seeds that focus on climate change mitigation and landscape restoration in Africa have never been more important. 

Working with the Farmers
Working with the Farmers
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farmers learning about climate change adaptation
farmers learning about climate change adaptation

Hello there,

I hope this letter finds you, wherever you may be, happy and well. I don’t know if you’ve seen the news lately, but in the realm of the health of the planet and its peoples, there has been a slew of devastating news. 

It started with the Southern African floods that swept across Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe–taking with it thousands of homes and hectares of crops, in a region that already suffers from chronic food insecurity. Soon following came the mega flooding that just hit the midwestern states of the US, impacting corn, soybean and wheat farmers especially hard. For those of us that have been combating climate change with sustainable solutions for awhile now, these news headlines tugged at our heart strings in empathy for those impacted, but they didn’t necessarily surprise us. 

We’ve been well aware of climate change predictions, and how it will impact not only the environment, but humans on this planet. And more specifically, how those most vulnerable to climate change’s effects are the very people who continue to maintain a strong relationship with the earth: farmers. 

While recent news of these floodings, and the millions of people they have impacted, have left us saddened by the state of the world, it has only bolstered our drive to continue doing the important work we are doing: equipping farmers with the tools they need to make their families, their livelihoods, and their croplands more resilient in the face of these erratic weather patterns. 

Our impact in 2018 was our biggest yet: in all of our programming throughout northern Uganda, we were able to plant over 120,000 trees with small-scale farmers and refugees alike. We trained 409 farmers in Ugandan communities in climate change resiliency. And we don’t plan on stopping. 

We’re just three months into the year, and our team on the ground in Uganda is already working with local government officials in multiple sub-counties to sign villages up for this year’s climate change resiliency programming. Our seedling nurseries are filled with seedlings, waiting patiently to get their roots into the soil of farmers’ lands. Our team is working hard to ensure that even in the face of too much rainfall, or not enough, crops are protected, food continues to be harvested, and the earth is taken care of. All while mitigating the future effects of climate change. 

We ask you to join us. Help us keep doing this important work to empower farmers and ensure the longevity of this planet we call home. 

From Northern Uganda to you,

Georgia

a mother and son receiving seedlings
a mother and son receiving seedlings
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Peter, with a jackfruit tree he planted in 2018
Peter, with a jackfruit tree he planted in 2018

Meet Peter. Peter is from a village about a 45 minute drive from Gulu, the largest town in Northern Uganda. Generation after generation, his family has cultivated a wide array of crops–from millet and maize to peanuts and sesame–to provide for the family and live an abundant, albeit hard, life. Peter’s family depends on regular rain patterns to be able to support their livelihood; without a stable climate and dependable rains, Peter doesn’t know when to plant his seeds that will grow into healthy food crops. 

Peter’s parents speak candidly about this fact–how for much of their lives rain was consistent and so too were the harvests of their many, diverse food crops. These days though, his parents speak of erratic weather–long droughts, flash floods, and general uncertainty. “Without rain, we have no food,” they comment. This statement is simple, yes, but its impact profound. 

We are doing something about this. Through your help, the Native Seeds Project works directly with farmers to train them on climate change adaptation: educating farmers on the causes and onset of climate change, and perhaps more importantly, what they can do directly to mitigate its effect, and in turn, ensure that their food harvests are abundant enough to provide for their families. 

How do we do this? Well, simply put, we plant trees. More complexly put, we work directly with farmers to survey their land and their needs to identify agroforestry systems that will restore soil hydrology, diversify farming systems, and reduce disaster risk in response to increasingly-volatile weather patterns. 

This year, Peter planted fifty new trees on his family’s land, and attended three day-long trainings that equipped him with the knowledge he needs to confront the environmental issues facing him, his family, and his wider community. The result? a farmer who no longer feels helpless in the face of climate change, but rather a farmer who understands what is happening with the environment, and has a new toolkit on what he can do to work with his environment to ensure stability and success of his crops, his livelihood, and his community’s well-being. 

This year, the Native Seeds Project trained 409 farmers just like Peter in climate change adaptation, and planted over 20,000 tree seedlings with them. Our team visits Peter and our other partner farmers on a regular basis throughout the year, ensuring the cementation of the knowledge they received during trainings, and ensuring the survival of the tree seedlings they’ve planted. This ongoing followup has formed a large network of climate change adaptation warriors: a vast community of farmers throughout Northern Uganda joining forces, joining hands, and joining a movement to create landscapes and communities more resilient. 

As 2018 comes to a close, know that you are a part of Peter’s movement: without your support, farmers like Peter are unable to get the training and resources they need to combat climate change. So, from the bottom of Peter’s heart, and ours, thank you for being a Climate Change Adaptation Warrior. We hope you will continue to be warrior, alongside us. 

 

From Northern Uganda to you,

Georgia

Native Seeds Project team training farmers
Native Seeds Project team training farmers
A farmer receiving seedlings for planting
A farmer receiving seedlings for planting
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Planting season is coming to an end, and our team is proud as it reflects on this year’s tree outreach program.

Through September, our Native Seeds Project team distributed over 33,000 seedlings to participating farmers in Gulu District: 20,150 through our extensive farmer outreach in Bungatira (with climate change resilience trainings) and 11,000 to farmers through partner organizations.

In addition, one Wise Women member planted 1.5 acres with 1,200 seedlings and another member received an 700 seedlings for her land. 15 women also participated in farmer trainings in Bungatira giving them the opportunity to make additional income through seedling outreach as Tree Planting Pioneers.

The second rainy season had scarce rains, which meant that distribution was slower than expected. Total seedlings produced in 2018 at our nurseries currently stands at 50,000. 

With rains extremely erratic this year, more and more farmers are beginning to recognize the power of this project and its benefits for their land. In nearby Laroo division, the local government has expressed interest in contracting the team to plant seedlings after the dry season (March 2019). Our team is hoping to double our impact in 2019, producing and distributing 100,000 seedlings.

In the Palorinya Refugee Settlement, seedling distribution is still ongoing and we are currently on track to have distributed to nearly 20,000 refugee households in our 2018 outreach with the Moyo District Forest Office. The final figures will be available later this year as well as a proposal to scale refugee seedling distribution to the rest of the Palorinya Camp.

Over the next 18 months, our team is excited to increase its presence in Northern Uganda while transitioning the nursery to a financially sustainable social enterprise. Thank you for your support to date and hope you will continue to join us in this project!

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Organization Information

Wild Forests and Fauna

Location: Carnation, WA - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @WildForestFauna
Project Leader:
Georgia Beasley
Seattle, WA United States

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Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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