Biodiversity and Environmental Conservation Project in Uganda
- Volunteer Opportunity posted by Africa Sustainable Tourism Care Foundation
Times of day
Full time (30+ hrs/wk)
Short-Term (few weeks/months)
Lwanga Zone LC1, Kibuye Parish, Makindye Division West Constituency
P.O. Box 29523, Kampala, Uganda – East Africa
Uganda depends heavily on environment and natural resources. Future sustainability in agriculture, food security and general livelihoods relies significantly on environmental conservation and sustainability. However, the country is subjected to environmental problems which put the economic, environmental and social development at risk. These include soil degradation, deforestation, drainage of wetlands, loss of biodiversity, pollution and unsanitary conditions.
Many of these problems are associated with poor management of water resources, poor farming methods, demographic pressures leading to land scarcity, and lack of efficient energy sources; resulting into food insecurity arising from drought and floods, outbreak of diseases such as malaria, water borne diseases associated with floods and respiratory diseases associated with droughts, and heavy rainfalls which increase land degradation.
In Uganda, the continued environmental degradation has remained a big threat and causing severe problems for the local communities and the country. It is recognized that this challenge could only be overcome through community led efforts to conserve biodiversity and its use for sustainable livelihoods. The environmental conservation project offer participants with both valuable life-changing experience and an opportunity to make a difference.
Volunteers in this field do hands-on work and have a direct impact on the preservation of the environment in the host communities. Participants may help to integrate environmental curricula in schools; promote sustainable utilization of natural resources— proper sanitation practices and alternative energy practices; promote environmental awareness activities— wastewater management, recycling, environmental youth clubs and park management; as well as promoting environmental approaches— sustainable agriculture, fuel efficient stoves and various agri-business strategies.
The project provides international participants with the opportunity to gain firsthand experience in agro-forestry, tree planting and reforestation, with focus on the Western Uganda Highlands. The program brings together international volunteers on a regular basis to construct nurseries both with schools and communities, transplanting trees to degraded forest sites and train communities on agro-forestry techniques. Some of the activities are season oriented.
What does the Project do?
The project assist communities throughout Uganda with the design, establishment and management of tree nurseries, tree planting programs, and reforestation activities. This will reduce pressure on the natural forest and thus contribute to forest and wildlife conservation in the region, while creating sustainable livelihoods for community members. Education contributes to increasing environmental awareness in the project areas and Uganda at large.
Contributing to reforestation, rehabilitation of degraded forest land and forest conservation; working with local communities; training and assisting local people with tree nursery establishment and management, tree planting activities, local celebrations; visiting primary and secondary schools, assisting with conservation education activities; and of course experiencing life in one of the most special biodiversity hotspot (plants, birds, butterflies!) areas.
This volunteer program has five main components:
v Nursery site identification: a survey of schools, individuals and farming groups interested in tree planting is conducted all year round. This survey is carried out in close collaboration with schools/ farming groups in Uganda.
v Tree nursery establishment: this is conducted in schools and communities. Tree nurseries are best established in the months of February and March, but can still be done anytime of the year. During the establishment of nursery, schools and communities involved are trained on nursery design, construction and management. Prior to the nursing of seeds, seeds are treated, a shade and fence is constructed. A bare-stem nursery is jointly prepared by the locals, staff and volunteers.
v Education on Agro-forestry techniques: this is conducted in school and communities throughout the year. The education is focused on the importance of agro-forestry and tree planting, training on agro-forestry techniques, and characteristics of agro-forestry seeds.
v Tree transplanting: begins three months after nursery establishment which marks the starts of the raining season, therefore transplanting is done in the months of April, May, June, July, and August. Nevertheless, this can still be done any time of the year. During transplanting locals are assisted by staff and volunteers. Trees are transplanted meeting environmental needs of the community.
Who is Eligible for this Program?
No specific qualifications or previous experience is required to join the environment conservation projects. However, volunteers with special expertise are highly preferred. Participants should bring both enthusiasm and humility to their projects. Volunteers are expected to be independent and creative, bring ideas to the table, be respectful to organization leadership and work collaboratively.
For more information please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website at www.africasustainabletourism.org
Language/Cultural Support Available
How To Apply
Complete and submit our online application form with the details of your chosen program and dates. You will then receive an email confirming that ASTCF has received your application. Within 48 hours (2 working days), you will receive an email from your ASTCF Principle Program Consultant acknowledging your application and confirming the project and dates of your volunteer program. In this email, you will receive more information about your chosen program, as well as details on how to pay the non refundable deposit on your program of US$150 which is required to validate and initiate the application process and to secure your placement. It will only take you a short time to complete this form: Online application.