You are here: Home ACTIVITIES Community Forest Project
The Mbiame community forest constitutes one of the last remaining afro-montane forest ecosystems in the Bamenda highlands in the Northwest Region of Cameroon after the Kilum/Ijim forest in Oku and is recognized globally as a local biodiversity hotspot as well as an important centre of endemism. There is a large population around the forest, which depends heavily on it for a wide variety of products. In addition, the forest has significant cultural and spiritual value to the local people and also serves as a major watershed supplying fresh water to over 9,355 inhabitants. It is under serious threats as a result of varied degradation drivers, notably; forest clearance due to poor agricultural practices at the buffer zones of the forest, uncontrolled fires, wood extraction, illegal and uncontrolled hunting, extensive grazing, presence of invasive species in the forest, and more especially the absence of a constituted and functional management institution to properly manage the forest resources.
With financial support provided by the New England Biolabs Foundation, the project seeks to build on the successes and limitations of past interventions aimed at tackling the major causes of environmental and socio-economic problems of Mbiame community by involving the local population to take an active role towards the restoration and protection of the degraded forest lands as well as promoting the sustainable management of forest resources to ensure that forest benefits remain forever while at the same time replacing unsustainable traditional agricultural practices with highly productive and biologically diverse forests.
Additionally, the project shall assist the community to restore, protect and expand the natural forest remnants using indigenous tree species, create and strengthen the capacity of a forest management committee by including all the stakeholders in the platform, eradicate eucalyptus (invasive) species from the forest, promote improved agricultural practices at the buffer zones of the forest, as well as provide support and training to the forest management committee on bee farming that will act as an income generating activity to ensure the continuation of project activities beyond the project lifespan.