Re-greening Sokura, Mali

Re-greening Sokura

Project Location: Mopti, Mali
Project PartnerSahel Eco

ITF provided funding for the Regreening Sokura project in Mali for three years from 2010 to 2013. The project was delivered by our partner, Sahel Eco. To ensure that the achievements of the project were recorded and lessons learnt that could be of benefit to future regreening projects across Africa we commissioned an independent evaluation which was conducted by Groundswell International.

The evaluation process engaged all the key people who had been involved in the project from the local communes in the Mopti region: village chiefs, elders, farmers and women’s groups. The one key finding is that the project has succeeded in generating a ‘critical mass’ of households who have adopted Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR).

Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration

FMNR is a technique based on encouraging the systematic re-growth of existing trees or  self-sown seeds. It can be used wherever there are living tree stumps with the ability to coppice (re-sprout) or seeds in the soil that can germinate. The project’s success means that FMNR will continue to spread throughout the villages without needing further support from Sahel Eco. Some village authorities are even making it compulsory to carry out FMNR. Sahel Eco’s work with these communities has demonstrated that FMNR is a potent tool in increasing food security and resilience for subsistence farming communities in the face of increasing desertification and climate change in the Sahel region.

Deforestation Impacts

Many villages have completely reduced or are significantly reducing deforestation and the diversity of tree species has increased. As much as 60% of non-flood plain areas have now been reforested. But there is still work to be done. Some areas are still experiencing deforestation, including three dryland villages close to urban centres and in the Koubaye Forest. In fact our current programme, Trees 4 Livelihoods, which is funded by the Big Lottery Fund and our own Africa Drylands programme, is now working with both forest users and forest authorities to ensure sustainable management of Koubaye Forest.

"When I saw and learnt everything that I could earn from planting trees, and compared it to what I earn from my millet fields, I decided it was better for me to change"

Ousmane Cissé - Tree Plantation Owner
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