The European Union Restoration and Conservation Project in the Refugee and Refugee Host Communities

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  1. Project Background:  In a response to the impacts of displaced populations on the environment, natural resources, and the livelihoods of the hosting communities, the European Union put in place an Action funded under the European Trust Fund to address the increased Environmental and Ecosystem Degradation in the Refugee Hosting Districts of Uganda (RED).  The overall goal of the Action is to increase environmental and natural resources protection by restoration and conservation of degraded natural resources (forests, wetlands, and woodlands), for improved livelihoods of the displaced populations and host communities.  
  2. This Action is focusing on improving the livelihoods of refugees and refugee hosting communities through restoring and conserving degraded ecosystems (forests, savannah woodlands, wetlands, and riverbanks) and promoting Sustainable Land Management (SLM), Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA), and agroforestry.  
  3. The project is titled Restoring and Conserving Degraded and fragile ecosystems for improved livelihoods among the refugees and host communities of the Mid-Albertine Rift and West Nile Regions.  Operationally, it is being implemented within a 15 km radius all around the refugee settlement camps located in the districts of Kikuube, Kyegegwa, and Kamwenge districts (Albertine region), and the districts of Terego and Yumbe (West Nile region). Implementation of this four-year project started on the 8th of December 2020 and will end on the 7th of December 2024. 
  4. Specifically, the project aims to:
    1. restore targeted degraded forests, wetlands, riverbanks, savannah woodlands & other fragile ecosystems impacted by human activities in refugee hosting districts.  
    2. enhance adoption of sustainable Land Management (SLM), Climate Smart Agriculture practices (CSA), Agroforestry Enterprises, and Woodlot establishment and good post-harvest handling and value addition. and  
    3. build the capacity of Local Governments, Civil Society Organisations, private sector companies & local communities for effective uptake of climate change mitigation & environmental conservation measures built. 
  5. The key activities include:
    1. Support communities to restore agreed degraded protected forests, wetlands, riverbanks, and savannah woodlands restored and protected. 
    2. Develop National guidelines for the selection of new refugee sites, monitoring, and measurement of the effectiveness of mitigation measures. 
    3. Support farmers to integrate SLM, Agroforestry, and CSA in their farming practices; and to establish woodlots for sourcing fuelwood, building materials, and carbon credits. 
    4. Support selected private sector and or groups to adopt good practices for post-harvest handling and value addition of priority crops in the project areas.  
    5. Train and support the LGs, CBOs/NGOs and DLGs to increase the delivery of extension support to farmers and SMEs. 
  1. Project Outputs are: 

The above activities are expected to deliver the following outputs: 

1a. Social-economic and ecological baseline information. 

1b. Hectares of degraded protected forests, wetlands, riverbanks, and savannah woodlands restored and protected. 

1c. National guidelines for the selection of new refugee sites, monitoring, and measurement of the effectiveness of mitigation measures developed. 

2a. Increased acreages of landholdings under SLM, CSA, and Agroforestry.  

2b. Increased coverage of woodlots for sourcing fuelwood, building materials, and carbon credits. 

2c. Increased households/private farmers adopting SLM, CSA, AF, and woodlot practices. 

2d. Increased processing and marketing quality of selected on-farm products 

3a. CBOs/NGOs and DLGs increasing delivery of support to farmers and SMEs 

3b. Increased number of people knowledgeable in environmental conservation measures, climate change mitigation and adaptation measures, 

3c. Demonstrations for enabling the private sector to add value to selected enterprises established.  

3c. Improved networking and collaboration of partners for ecosystems’ restoration, conservation, and enhancing the resilience of agriculture and marketing. 

Project Implementers: The implementation of restoration and conservation project is a consortium comprised of the Uganda Biodiversity Trust Fund (UBF), Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), Nature Uganda (NU), and Ecological Christian Organization (ECO), are implementing the project.  District Local Governments, Local partners within the project districts are supporting the project in the mobilization and extension of services to the beneficiary communities.  Uganda Biodiversity Trust Fund (UBTF) is coordinating the consortium.