In our first blog post on the new Kilifi Community Mangrove Project we were introduced to the two community groups undertaking the planting of 50,000 mangrove seedlings; Abent and Comensum Mangrove Rehabilitation Groups.
We have been speaking to members of the groups about their experiences with the project.
We spoke to Lucy and Anthony, both members of Abent.
Lucy explained that the project (made possible by funding from Natural Capital Partners and their ‘Million Mangroves‘ programme) is not only enabling the conservation of the mangrove forests in Kilifi but is also supporting the local community – especially during the Covid 19 pandemic. “During this time, jobs are hard to find but through the financial support we are able as Abent members to place meals on our tables. Thanks to CO2balance”.
“Previously it was hard to convince community members to freely volunteer and join us and help in the planting of the mangroves because we could not afford paying them even one dollar at the end of the day for them to buy food for their families“.
The project is enabling the groups to support local livelihoods. Anthony goes on to say that the community as a whole is more motivated now to protect the mangrove ecosystem.
Speaking to David and Rachel from Comensum, it is clear that the ongoing impact of Covid 19 is at the forefront of everyone’s minds.
David spoke about the uncertainties that lay ahead, as a result of Covid 19. But, the project has provided income for the members of Comensum as well as other community members who have engaged in the group’s work.
“Awareness creation of mangrove forest conservation has been made easy”.
Rachel discussed how the project has positively impacted the local community. Looking to the future she stated “Mangrove forest that was becoming a desert will now thrive”.
These firsthand accounts show how big of an impact a project such as this can have in local communities. As the mangroves grow and develop, the ecosystem services generated will bring further benefits to the communities.