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Agroforestry and Landscape Restoration YPARD Community Solution Projects in Africa

YPARD Cameroon training women farmers on agroforestry methods

Agroforestry is an excellent method to promote intercropping of diverse crops, both for cash and nutrition, while reducing pressures from pests and diseases. Agroforestry methods are frequently promoted by YPARD members as a tenant of agroecological production. This article provides three examples of YPARD Community Solutions Projects focusing on agroforestry in Africa.

YPARD Cameroon Community Solution Projects

Seed for Agriculture

Quality seeds are a cornerstone of crop yield. Seed for Agriculture project is a nursery which provides certified seedlings, but also training, to rural farmers for agroforestry practices. The project’s mission is to contribute to the production of quality seedlings and train young professionals in this strategic sector. The initiative was started by Bebel Nguepi, YPARD Cameroon Country Representative, four years ago. Mrs Edoa Celine, agroecologist, seed technologist, and YPARD Cameroon member is an expert trainer for the project.

The overall objective of the training is to capacitate women and young professionals from the Yaoundé VII district on citrus and plantain planting and propagation techniques, thereby improving the supply of quality seedlings in Cameroon. The project also aims to improve the productivity and competitiveness of farms by disseminating innovative techniques and technologies through research. It provides consultation to participating women and young professionals on the management and profitability of their farms. 

The Seed for Agriculture farm is also creating jobs for young people in Cameroon. The farm employs a general manager, a farm manager, and a maintenance engineer. It also employs part-time workers to monitor its seed production. 


Tree-planting with Children and Youth: Demonstrating the long-term effects of Green Regeneration

YPARD Cameroon’s tree planting project took place at Mfandena Public School in Yaoundé, Cameroon. The project was implemented with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies - IFRC, Young Volunteers for Environment Cameroon, Seed for Agriculture, and J2D-Afrique.

This initiative went beyond planting trees; the goal was to nurture a generation of environmental stewards. In collaboration with dedicated partners, YPARD Cameroon meticulously refined their approach, engaging in detailed planning, negotiations with schools, and mobilizing passionate volunteers. Their hands-on involvement extended from supplying seedlings and compost to actively participating in the tree-planting activity. 

55 fruit trees were planted in the school compound. While the trees themselves will grow to bring shade, oxygen, and fruits to the children and the local community, the communal activity of planting them together instilled a deep appreciation for trees among the children. 


YPARD Kenya Community Solution Project

Fruit Trees for Schools

YPARD Kenya is also passionate about the potential of agroforestry to allow intercropping perennial and annual crops mixed with the grazing of small livestock for diverse rural livelihoods. Therefore, in Busia and Kisumu Counties, YPARDians have been working with rural community schoolchildren to plant quality seedlings for mango, avocado and indigenous trees. At each of the Igero and Nyando Primary Schools, over 300 school children participated in the planting of 100 trees. The children were also trained on tree management, like how to water, fence, and protect their seedlings. 

These fruit trees have been planted on school grounds, but have also been provided to school children for planting at their homes. 


YPARD Ghana Community Solution Project

Beekeeping in Agroecological Systems

To create quality jobs for women and youth, YPARD Ghana is investing in improved rural-urban links within the food system. The chapter highlights the necessity of advancing agroforestry development methodologies, especially to create rural-to-urban linkages which are culturally, socially, and environmentally appropriate. With this in mind, YPARD Ghana launched for young beekeepers. The initiative was started in June 2023 in the Volta region of the Ho municipality with local bee species and has thus far trained 15 young entrepreneurs. This was done to support the government of Ghana's Green Agenda and to support ecotourism.

This initiative integrates the creation of inclusive market systems to ensure beekeeping results in income for young people living in rural areas. Through these efforts, YPARD Ghana seeks to preserve indigenous beekeeping knowledge by linking it with economic growth. In the same spirit, efforts are being made to enhance the ability of second-cycle and university students to better equip themselves as young entrepreneurs in response to Ghana's need for sustainable food security. In the future, the YPARD Ghana team plans to bring the training to other rural communities in Ghana.