Published: 18 April 2018
The East African Communities’ Organization for Management of Lake Victoria Resources - Tanzania chapter (ECOVIC) is a regional International Non-Government Organization with a Vision of Having a healthy and productive Lake Victoria Basin (LBV); and riparian communities living in a clean productive Lake Basin. The organization has been implementing activities that aim at protecting Lake Victoria's Zone 6 Regions namely Kagera, Mara, Shinyanga, Simiyu, Geita and Mwanza.
Despite the lack of adequate funds, ECOVIC - Tanzania used knowledge exchange and community self- reliance approaches to achieve tremendous results from it's activities. The knowledge exchange partnership was as a result of the Environmental Situation analysis done by 7 students from FARNEBO Focal high school of Sweeden; the analysis identified Mwabayanda and Mwabasami as the most environmentally degraded areas characterized by loss of biodiversity, desertification, and soil erosion during high rainfall seasons.
Based on the appalling results of the study, ECOVIC initiated a community self-reliant tree planting project to support in the "greening" of the identified areas starting with Mwabayanda village. The exercise aimed at restoring the degraded land along the LVB.
Due to the community awareness conducted by ECOVIC, 80 households in Mwabayanda planted trees at their homes and other community areas. The tree planting exercise changed Mwabayanda village from bare land to sound biodiversity with over 20000 tree species growing.
The collective manpower of the community, together with pupils of Mwabayanda primary school planted trees on 5 hectares of land around the school.
So far the project has conducted several activities such as meetings to plan and execute tree planting within and outside of Mwabayanda village. This has gone hand in in hand with creating awareness to the communities on how to nurture the growth and sustainability of the trees. The project has successfully sourced and distributed tree seedlings to the Mwabayanda community.