Planting at Tundaua

by Community Forests International on April 12, 2009

Tundaua is a village on the island’s south west corner, apparently holding large deposits of natural gas discovered by the British during their period of colonization.

Men and women from the village worked throughout the day to plant approximately 2,000 trees (Mvinje and Mtundo). Tundaua is one of the first villages to approach Community Forests International, to ask for assistance in planting trees on Pemba, and local enthusiasm was shown by the large number of participants in the tree planting. Given the large demand for trees in this shehia, Community Forests International and MICA have set up two separate nurseries to accommodate the growing demand for tree planting as an income-generating activity.

As an additional benefit to the planting of trees in Tundaua, villagers have drafted a Collaborative Natural Resource Management Plan (CNRMP) which will give them exclusive land rights to the area’s resources, both protecting the community forest and ensuring that any resource extraction, including that of natural gas, would only be facilitated under the communities consent and for their benefit. There has also been talk of hotel development in Tundaua, as the shehia (village) features a remarkable beach.

Community Forests International hopes to use some of the funds from this year's Brinkman Fundraiser to pay for the government surveys required to fix the communities land tenure, offering Tundaua the highest level of protection available. The Collaborative Natural Resource Management Plan, supported by both MICA and Community Forests International, will ensure that all future development follows the interests of the community, ensuring that the people of Tundaua will be able to continue to fish and farm as they have done for centuries before.

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