Sustainable Conservation of Akagera National Park

Ended in 2013.

 

Akagera National Park (ANP) constitutes a very important ecosystem in Rwanda. Due to anthropogenic activities, it has been affected by various changes. Spatial reduction is one of them. ANP always constitutes a so exceptional site made of terrestrial and aquatic ecological entities. Despite its importance at global level, ANP suffers a severe degradation of its ecosystems whereas they should be managed in sustainable way. Among serious threats weighting on the ANP, one can mention: poaching, illegal pasture, bush fires, illegal fishing, deforestation and nibbling of the surface of the park.

 

biodiversity-mining biodiversity-forestcutting

Tree Cutting, as well as minig is a threat to biodiversity. 

RDB and local authorities have put more effort in the conservation of ANP including the construction of an electric fence to demarcate the park’s boundaries that people can be free from animal destruction and the park is safe from encroaches. However, these efforts would be fruitless if nothing happens to empower community on park importance, sustainable conservation of the ANP and improvement of community livelihoods.

 

SCANPelectrical-fence SCANPcattle-near-fence

Electric fence at the boundaries of ANP. Cattle grazing near the electrical fence. 

To support and enhance protection of the local conservation initiatives, RECOR, supported by the GEF-SGP Rwanda, established a community based conservation strategy by creating a hedge of sisals in the buffer zone of lake Nasho for reducing crop raiding, improving livelihood through sale of sisal products and create awareness among the community on sustainable conservation of environment of ANP particularly.

 

SCANPcompleted-handcraft

Use of fibers on weaving (Hozagara cooperative) 

Project goal:
Empowerment of ANP neighboring community in sustainable conservation of its natural resources.

 

Project achievements:
• An area of 6ha is covered with 34,000 sisal plants, which were procured from local community, which fibers are
used in handcraft
• A study tour at Bugesera to learn sisal plantation and exploitation took place
• 120 people were trained on sisals production and plantation in order to reinforce the knowledge and to acquire practical skills
on production and maintenance of sisals
• Training for opinion leader was realized to inform them about interaction between the park and the local community
and its sustainable conservation
• A 7.2km long sisal hedge in the buffer zone of Nasho lake was formed through plantation of sisals to prevent animals from the
lake from passing
• Local initiatives were supported (digging a canal in 50m from Lake Nasho trough community)
SCANPemployment-community-sisal

Employment of community members in sisal plantation