Saving forests, protecting wildlife, and changing lives
Fresh hope for forests and families
Following decades of political and economic turbulence, the people of Zimbabwe are now feeling the effects of a changing climate. With limited economic opportunities, desperate communities have delved deeper into the forests, clearing it for subsistence farming and fuelwood. More than a third of Zimbabwe's majestic forests have been lost.The Kariba project protects what remains while equipping the local communities with the necessary resources and skills to protect their future and the future of the planet.
Sitting on the shores of Lake Kariba
Close to the Zimbabwe-Zambia border, the Kariba project is one of the largest registered REDD+ projects forming a giant wildlife corridor that protects an expansive forest, home to numerous vulnerable and endangered species – including the African elephant, lion, hippo, lappet-faced vulture and southern ground hornbill. Covering almost 785,000 hectares, the project connects four national parks: the Chizarira, Matusadona and Mana Pools National Parks (also a World Heritage Site), and Zambia's Lower Zambezi National Park, with eight safari reserves!
Designed by the local community for the local community
Kariba is a community-based project, administered by the four local Rural District Councils (RDCs) of Binga, Nyaminyami, Hurungwe and Mbire. It's through these councils that communities can highlight when and where they need support. Investments in the project go towards a range of activities that promote the independence and wellbeing of these communities. Improved health clinics provide better healthcare, infrastructure including new roads, boreholes, biodigesters improve daily life, and school subsidies are offered to the poorest quartile of the population. Project activities in conservation agriculture, community gardens, beekeeping training, fire management, and ecotourism create jobs and facilitate sustainable incomes, benefiting the entire region.
Don't just take it from us!
Mr. Luke Kalavina, is Chief of Hurungwe Rural District Council. The input and support from Mr Kalavina and the people he represents is vital for the success of the Kariba project. At the last verification visit in August 2019 he was pleased with how the project is going so far, saying:
"So far so good" “Communities are appreciated with this program"
Farmers in Kariba are facing increasing water challenges as the seasonal rains are becoming shorter and more unpredictable.
Mr. Mofal Mutenda, a local farmer explains how his hard work is paying off thanks to the Kariba project:
"I have started a family garden in 2018 after receiving community garden training from the Kariba program. I can generate income from this garden around 3,600 USD/year"