Environment and Agriculture
Band-e-Amir Northern Plateau Proposed Protected Area Landscape Management
16 months (2017 & 2018)
LSO supported and implemented Band-e-Amir Northern Plateau Protected Area Landscape Management implemented in Band-e-Amir’s Northern Plateau, Yakawlang District, Bamyan province from 15th March 2017 to 15th Jun 2018. The purpose of this project was to conserve and recover the biodiversity and environment of northern Band-e-Amir by development of the capacity of local communities to actively engage in development and management of the target areas as well as providing facility for local rangers to improve their capacity to manage and conserve the natural resources and wildlife in the target areas.
In particular, the project has resulted in:
- Improved capacity of 30 members of Community Development Councils (CDCs) through 3-day training workshop on natural resource management, landscape conservation and biodiversity,
- Enhanced awareness of 590 individuals (310 females and 280 males) on wildlife and biodiversity conservation,
- Enhanced youth engagement and established a community association, represented by key members of 16 community development councils in BANP, Yakawlang, Bamyan province,
- Construction of a Ranger Station in Northern Plateau Band-e-Amir, Yakawlang district, Bamyan province.
- Capacity Building Training:
Through the project, the capacity building training strengthened the role of the community participation in landscape management by improving the capacity of 12 Female and 18 Male of Community Development Councils (CDCs) through a three day training was conducted in ranger post, Dehbebood, Yakawlang, Bamyan province from 21st to 23rd October 2017.
The training session commenced by Hussain Anush, Trainer speeches with warmly welcoming and thanking for the participants for 3 days training meanwhile he mentioned and elaborated regarding benefits of conducting such kind of training. At the end, he emphasized and requested from all community rangers to serve and do their best for protection of wildlife, environmental and natural resource management. A group picture of training participants is below:
- Awareness Raising Campaign on Wildlife Conservation and Sustainable Natural Resouces
Through the project, LSO reached 590 individuals (310 females and 280 males) through community awareness campaign on natural resource, landscape and wildlife conservation from 16 northern plateau target communities, Yakawlang, Bamyan province.
Band-e-Amir Northern Plateau Proposed Protected Area Landscape Management. Implementing Afghanistan’s Environmental Law in Band-e-Amir NP, Yakawlang, Bamyan Province
Awareness campaign on wildlife, natural resources and landscape management in Khorjin Bolog, BANP, Yakawlang, Panjbab, 2017.
Photo By: LSO
Enacting Environmental Law at national level in 2007 is an important step in the process to address environmental issues across Afghanistan. But to change long-held cultural beliefs towards natural resources and conservation in smaller communities takes more than words in a book stored in the capital city. It takes women like Ms. Gul Cheehra (not her real name) who is part of Labor Spring Organization (LSO) engaging to meet with community members, gather information for evidence-based awareness campaign, raise capacity of the wider community members, meet with local key stakeholders, and gain their commitment to support meaningful and lasting change. This is not easy work, but through its members like Ms. Gul Cheehra, LSO launched this effort with the support of a grant from SGP.
LSO is a well-established CSO in Bamyan province, and along with local CBOs, it held important awareness-raising and capacity building training workshops and classes for local actors and community members. Ms.Gul Cheehra attended these meetings and classes and she notes,
“Now I lead meetings and events, coordinate efforts, design and implement my own conservation plan, meetings, and campaigns, involving community leaders, and increasing awareness of community members in my village.”
An important part of her and her colleagues’ conservation efforts were meetings with local religious and environmental officials. Members of the Ministry of Hajj and Relegious Affair were very supportive of LSO’s efforts to ban use of brushwood. A concrete example of ministry support was an official Assurance Letter sent out to all religious leaders banning hunting and overuse of brushwood in their communities. This ministry letter was enthusiastically supported by 10 imams who work closely with the Ministry of Hajj and Religious Affairs. These imams gave Friday sermons condemning hunting, going even further, they personally committed to stopping hunting and over use of brushwood in their communities. The imams were true to their word, stopped three hunting attempt by referring them to the government officials.