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WWF Flags Off Communities For Water Catchment Restoration

A multidisciplinary team of technical officers from the Ministry of Water and Environment and WWF Uganda led by the Water Governance Manager Beria Namanya supported communities around the Awoja water catchment to establish six community tree nursery beds.

According to Namanya, each nursery bed will benefit 30 households totaling to 180 households engaged in the initiative in middle-lower Awoja sub-catchment.

The nursery beds are envisioned to support the restoration of 620 hectares of wetlands, 13 Kilometers stretch on River Sironko and 1200 hectares of degraded land through afforestation, re-afforestation and agroforestry measures.

The taskforce also engaged in training women and Youths groups from lake Okolitorom and Apeduru Apapai sub-catchment in nursery establishment and management.

These received garden equipment worth USD 26,600 that will be utilized by communities to maintain the nursery beds but also support the proper growth of the seedlings.

In his remarks, the District Natural Resources Officer for Bukedia, David Oruka tasked the community members to utilize the tools given to them to maintain the nurseries and also improve their agricultural methods as a way of preventing the heavy water runs during the rainy seasons.

“Keeping contaminants from entering into waterways improves river quality and protects downstream communities”, he said adding that appropriate land management in drinking water catchments helps create sustainable farming practices, is likely to save money on farm operations, has a positive impact on the environment and creates healthier, more appealing and more valuable land.

The Government of Uganda through the Ministry of Water and Environment (MWE) secured funding to implement Integrated Water Management and Development Projects (IWMDP) in different Water Management Zones (WMZs) of Uganda.  Part of the financing under the current (ongoing) IWMDP will cater for supporting communities to implement priority catchment management measures in middle/lower Awoja sub catchment in Eastern Uganda. To this regard, MWE engaged the services of World-Wide Fund for Nature, Uganda Country Office to undertake this assignment.
© Happy Ali
A structure of a tree nursery bed for one of the groups