Francis B.N. Sabuni
Through the financial assistance by the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Dar-Es-Salaam, the Eastern Arc Mountains Conservation Endowment Fund (EAMCEF) successfully implemented a five year (June 2011-May 2016) project “Improving Conservation of the Eastern Arc Mountains Forests in Tanzania” targeting nine protected areas, namely; Amani, Nilo, Chome, Magamba, Mkingu, Uluguru, Kilombero and Uzungwa Scarp Nature Reserves, and the Udzungwa Mountains National Park. The project implementation was undertaken through field partners in the eleven priority District Councils where the nine protected sites lies – Muheza, Korogwe, Mkinga, Same, Lushoto, Mvomero, Morogoro, Morogoro Municipality, Kilombero, Kilolo and Mufindi. Whereas project partners coordinated and supervised the implementation of the project activities in the field, EAMCEF issued project grants to facilitate the interventions in three thematic areas – forest conservation and management; community development and livelihood improvement; and, applied biodiversity and climate change research.
While implementation of forest conservation and management projects aimed to achieve effective biodiversity conservation and improved forest condition of each of the nine priority sites, community development and livelihood improvement projects aimed to improve the economic wellbeing and social welfare of the communities living adjacent to the priority sites through provision of alternative livelihood options and income generating activities. Applied biodiversity and climate change research projects were implemented in order to generate useful information for informed decision making and conservation planning for effective conservation of the target forest sites.
Following successful completion of the project in May 2016, EAMCEF initiated a process to document the results and impacts realized from the implementation of the project in order to present the progress, share the experiences gained, lessons learned and approaches of best practice adopted in implementing the project. A field survey was then undertaken towards the end of 2017 whereby stories contained in this documentary were narrated by the project beneficiaries in some few selected sites. It is our sincere hope that you will find the stories interesting and useful.