Trees Healing a Nation: Rwanda Technical Notes
August 7, 2014
Much progress has been made in less than two years since the inception of the FMNR Rwanda project. The project targets areas in the Eastern Province which are subject to recurring drought, have economic development issues and a high rate of poverty.
As a result of project interventions momentum for FMNR adoption is growing. Individuals and communities are beginning to appreciate the impact of losing their indigenous tree species. The loss of traditional medicines, lack of fodder and fuel wood and high impact of climate change are now seen as being directly related to loss of indigenous tree species. Even though the program has only being going for less than 12 months, farmers are benefiting from the return of fruiting species, increased fodder, honey and fuel wood. Some farmers are using pruned branches and leaves to make compost. After pruning they have discovered a fertile soil under branches. Valuable and rare species such as sandalwood are regenerating and habitat for wildlife is being restored.
Having tasted the benefits of FMNR, communities are keen to expand the area regenerated. The project is advocating for access to government managed and protected lake perimeters and hills. These sites could be greatly enhanced through FMNR while providing environmental services and economic materials (sustainably harvested wood, fodder, medicines, fruit, edible leaves and honey).