FMNR & Children

March 7, 2016

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In Kenya, World Vision works with many communities to promote Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR) – a technique which is used to restore the environment, and hope, in developing countries. It involves selecting stumps and shrubs on farms and communal lands and pruning them so as to promote their growth into a tree. These trees in turn give communities benefits such as firewood, soil enrichment for crops, fruits and natural medicines.

World Vision promotes FMNR to farmers and also to children and youth. Why would children need to know about regenerating trees? So that the leaders of the next generation understand the links between caring for the environment and having enough food for the future!

Signs around the schools remind children of the importance of trees

World Vision takes a creative approach to promoting FMNR in schools – involving group discussions, poetry writing, essay competitions, dances and drama performances. These children increase their understanding of trees, crops and the environment and they return home to teach these lessons to their families. In Kenya FMNR has been taught in many schools for the last three years with some exciting results coming from the community!

For Kibe from Kenya, learning and implementing FMNR has had a whole range of benefits for his family.

“FMNR has brought many blessings in our home; my family is getting a lot firewood from the pruned branches from the trees in the FMNR site. We have enough firewood at home that can take us the whole term and I cannot therefore miss classes as I do not have to go to look for firewood from the forest, which is 5 kilometres away. I no longer come home as early as 2pm to fetch firewood but stay in school until 4pm studying. Our two dairy cows used to produce four litres of milk per day but since practising FMNR they now produce 10 litres per day. I now drink enough milk in the morning before going to school, I am happy because of this project.”

Students are chosen to read their poems at school assembly 

As head teacher of a local primary school, Dickson Changwony saw how FMNR offered new opportunities for his school and community.

“I learnt about FMNR through a sensitisation meeting of head teachers by World Vision. I had non-economical shrubs growing on the school compound and was planning to slash them to make the compound tidy. I once tried to plant exotic tree species in the school but none survived because of the harsh weather conditions in our locality. One teacher from our school was also trained by World Vision as the FMNR site three months into the project and the school management leased out the grass to farmers and we received 3,000 shillings from the site. We used the money to repair desks and buy revision papers for the pupils. Our school has become an FMNR learning site where farmers come and learn from it. We are proud as a school. FMNR is real.”

Originally featured on World Vision Australia’s Blog