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Community / Land projects / Sustainable Landscape Innovation Programme - Kilimanjaro Trans-boundary

Sustainable Landscape Innovation Programme - Kilimanjaro Trans-boundary


01/16 - 12/20


This project is part of


In the Kilimanjaro landscape, Tanzania, we aimed to restore landscape ecosystem services and improve productivity for economic activities, especially in agroforestry, bananas, coffee, land use planning, livestock, and rangelands restoration. We brought public, private, and community stakeholders together at three levels (regional/national, district, and village level) to discuss matters on sustainable landscapes ranging from policy reform, ecosystem services, civil society organisation governance, and sustainable landscape management solutions. The three-tiered MSP model paved the way for inclusive engagement of local stakeholders in decision making through the village-level meetings, often held in the communities’ local languages and hosted in a way such that everyone could contribute. The district level meetings brought together subject matter specialists (for example on agriculture, forestry, and livestock) to provide technical expertise on identifying barriers and developing practical solutions to the issues raised at the village MSPs. The district MSPs were critical in shaping the national and regional policy dialogues that focused on issues related to the conservation of landscapes - addressing both upstream and downstream issues in a connected manner. By connecting the dialogue spaces from different angles, the diversity of perspectives have been captured and contribute to a shared understanding of the current situation of land degradation and the corrective measures needed. Some of the land use planning practices which were identified as detrimental to the landscape included overgrazing, degradation of forest (for example the buffer zone of the National Parks), and soil erosion as a result of poor farm practices and burning of forests to clear the land for cultivation. By understanding the needs of the local actors involved – from pastoralists, farmers, wildlife management personnel, and land use planning actors – priority interventions were identified. As a result, pilots were set up such as implementation of village land use planning and community based forest restoration initiatives, and implemented with key actors. The results of these experiences were shared and discussed during the MSP to enable uptake and scaling through national actors, such as the National Land Use Planning Commission. The Sustainable Landscape and Innovation (SLI) project conducted a series of capacity building training sessions for project partners, CSOs, village leaders, and stakeholders. The established MSPs at village, district and national level, served as a forum for capacity enhancement, information sharing, and project performance monitoring. The MSPs also served as a mechanism to advocate for improved implementation of national policies, such as the Village Land Act No. 5 of 1999, Wildlife Conservation (Wildlife Management Areas) Regulation of 2012, and Guidelines for Designation and Management of Wildlife Management Areas of 2002. Other policies include the Wildlife Conservation Act of 2009, and the Village Land Use Plans (VLUPs) for selected villages. The project partnered with Enriching Skills Action Research Tanzania (ESAT) to support local CSOs and producer organisations to develop gender policies and enhance inclusivity at all levels, for instance by ensuring that participation in training and meetings is open and inclusive. Furthermore, women groups have been formed to spearhead socio-economic activities within villages. Women were supported to apply for elective positions within the CSOs and farmer groups - some of them succeeded and were elected to be local leaders (e.g. Vice Chairperson of the LEO Livestock Cooperative Society). We participated in various regional and international dialogue forums between 2016-2020 (Global Landscapes Dialogue and African Landscapes Dialogue, African Landscapes Dialogue). We also managed to strengthen relationships with high-level government authorities. Solidaridad supported the implementation of the Land Use Planning Act, No. 6 of 2007, and the SLI project team was invited to participate in a parliamentary session to review plans and budgets with the Ministry of Lands, Housing, and Settlement Development. Several sustainable landscape and diversification solutions were piloted to enable local communities within Mount Kilimanjaro to acquire practical skills and knowledge on activities to improve and diversify livelihoods, and restore ecosystem services.

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