Early last month, I had the opportunity to participate in something I am very passionate about, conservation.
I was able to join Africa Point for their Save Mount Kenya campaign. Their Save Mount Kenya campaign is a collaborative effort between them and the East African Wild Life Society (EAWLS) as part of their Tupande Pamoja initiative.
In 2011 they were able to plant 5,000 seedlings and with an 85% survival rate and during this trip we were able to see the trees they planted then.
Panoramic view of Mount Kenya Photo courtesy of Mutua Matheka.
Mount Kenya is the second highest mountain in Africa, after famous Kilimanjaro, located in the central highlands of Kenya it straddles the equator, north east of Nairobi. The landscape is diverse – dense bamboo and rainforest on the lower slopes give way to Afro-Alpine flora at the higher elevations, however deforestation is believed to be accelerating the degradation of the delicate micro-climate of the mountain.
Africa Point’s aim is to plant a total of 100,000 seedlings. You can support them by going to this link and sharing. They will donate a seedling for each share.
The area they have chosen for reforestation is called Hombe forest which is at the foot of Mt Kenya. It is not much of a forest right now but hopefully one day it will be restored to its former glory.
How the project works is that the EAWLS identifies an area, they find a partner to work with, in this case Africa Point. They visit the area and plant the seedlings. The community takes care of the seedlings making sure that they are not destroyed. The community is compensated for their services.
Once the forest is established, the community will eventually have to move out of the area as the land belongs to the Kenya Forest Service.
After taking a short tour of the area, we were given a short tutorial on how to plant the trees and then everybody got planting.
Once the planting was done we shared some refreshments with the community.
We then took a tour of the seedling nursery. The nursery is another way the community is able to benefit from the project since all the seedlings planted in the area were bought from the nursery.
Bamboo is widely grown, it is first planted in bamboo cuttings, later after maturity the individual shoots are transferred to the little black bags as seedlings.
I’ll definitely try visit again and see how much the area will have changed in a couple of years.
Have you ever been involved in any conservation activity?
This week I’ll be linking up with;
2. Noel Morata’s Travel Photo Mondays
3. Budget Travelers Sandbox Travel Photo Thursday.