By Yosam Gucwaki
Mid-Western Region Centre for Democracy and Human Rights (MICOD) in partnership with National forestry Authority (NFA) with support from Uganda Bio Diversity Fund have restored over 300hectares which had been entirely degraded.
The restored area had been entirely degraded by human settlement and sugar cane growing especially in the villages of Budongo Sub County in Masindi district. Budongo forest is 82530 hectares big and it has a length of 281 km.
The restoration has been carried out in Kyabisagazi village in Kigorobya Sub County Hoima district, Kanyege-Malire village, Nyakafunjo and Kibbali in Budongo Sub County Masindi district and Kabaseka village in Kuhungya Sub County in Bulisa district.
According to Lawrence Kangula the Regional Programme Coordinator MICOD, they signed a memorandum of understanding with NFA to champion the restoration since it is responsible for government forests.
He added that as MICOD they use NFA to carry out the necessary trainings, provide tree seedlings to the beneficiaries and to hire contractors who are doing the restoration.
He also said that they are doing the restoration by planting natural trees like Musizi, Mivule, Mahogany, Makamia among others adding that their target is to restore 400 hectares by November 2019.
He also revealed that they have distributed 600 bee hives to help the community members do apiary as an income generating activity to deter them from destroying the forests. 150 homesteads have so far received bee hives.
Kangula also explained that they give support to the communities adjacent to Budongo forests by providing them with tree seedlings to plant noting that the community members have been able to plant 14 hectares of natural trees to help them have their own woodlots.
He also said that the community members will act as security for the forest since they have been sensitized on the importance of protecting their own forests.
Jennifer Adokrach a resident of Kanyege village in Budongo Sub County in Masindi district noted that they are ready to jealously guard Budongo forests since they have now known the dangers which come along with environmental degradation.
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