Support Humanity Cameroon, SUHUCAM, an environmental conservation organisation has nursed and planted over seven thousand trees in the locality of Bamunkumbit, Ngoketunjah Division in the Northwest region, this year to fight climate change and protect water catchment areas.
The project is being executed through the Green Village Initiative (GVI), a SUHUCAM program aimed at raising awareness on climate change, promote the creation of community agro-forests, conserve and protect natural resources including water, wildlife and restore semi-degraded land to economically empower the local population and the indigenous people. The above figures are contained in the organisation’s report on its activities for the year 2020.
As specific objectives, the Green Village Initiative according to the report is to enhance food security, conserving and protecting catchment areas and creating sustainable green jobs.
In 2020, the organisation reports that they are planting 13,000 trees in the Bamunkumbit Intergraded Community Forest (BICFOR) in an operation named “Plant for Climate and Peace (P4CliP)”.
So far, as per statistics revealed by the organisation, about ten hectare of the fifty-hectre land donated to the organisation by the Bamunkumbit community, has already been put in to use with over seven thousand trees planted.
Reacting to a question on what explanation or reason is behind the the choice of trees’ species it is planting – Pygeum,Wenge, Gmelina arborea, and Acacia species – the coordintor of the organisation, Sunday Geoffrey expatiated that, “We are using a Forest Garden system where we plant a mixture of timber, medicinal and edible trees. We give priority to to environmentally friendly trees. Pygeum has high medicinal and economic values, Wenge has a fast growth rate, high economic value and is one of the protected tree species by IUCN. As for Gmelina arborea it also has a fast growth rate, resistant to hard weather and good in honey production while Acacia which also has fast growth rate is particularly good in water catchment area conservation.
“With the assistance and mobilisation of community labour, the SUHUCAM team in the beneficiary community has established a nursery with over nine thousand trees of various species.
“Despite the challenges, among them financial, getting a partner or funder to the organization for the effective implementation of this environmental program, challenges in acquiring seeds to expand the nursery, and many other difficulties are around the way of the project. The organization hope to hit the target of planting thirteen thousand trees by the end of 2020 in fulfillment of the “Plant for Climate and Peace” operation.”
Apart from environmental and climate change concerns, the organization in the implementation of its educational program, whose main objective is to increase students’ awareness and interest in global affairs to enable active participation in the promotion of sustainable development goals, visited ten schools in Yaounde where students were sensitized on the ills of drug consumption, and on the inoculcation of good and morale practices.
Changing the mindset and building a community of informed, empowered and engaged youths, instilling self-confidence among the youths, building life skills to improve creativity, innovation and facilitate professional integration are the reasons that led to the conception and launching of the vision in January 2020.
In the course of the implementation of the educational program through outings to both day and evening schools in Yaounde, the organisation cited the following as it discoveries:
“More than 90% of the students we talked to were interested in global issues but have no idea in how they can contribute to the achievement of these goals. Most students have little idea about career opportunities and professional training opportunities offered by the various higher institutions in Cameroon. Also, most students have preconceived ideas that to gain admission into a professional institution in Cameroon, you need to be related to someone with political influence or corrupt your way,” the report said.
By Beng Humphrey Fang