The Catholic Diocese of Mzuzu in Malawi and its development department have received a 2020 Misean Cara Climate Award. The project, which was submitted to Misean Cara in 2019 by St Patrick’s Missionary Society on behalf of Bishop John Ryan (Bishop of Mzuzu) was titled ‘Sustainable Management of Land and Forest Resource, Diocese of Mzuzu’. It is a medium three-year multiannual project addressing effects of climate change, promoting usage of climate change interventions and improving quality of life through income generating activities from both land and forest resources. The goal of the project is to mitigate effects of Climate Change and improve livelihoods of participating communities by addressing the causes of land and forest degradation and restoring ecosystems health and functioning in Mzuzu Diocese.
The project, which has just finished year 1, will cover 18 Parishes over a period of 3 years from October 2019 – October 2022. The project is using the Trainer of Trainees (TOTs) to build the capacity of communities through training the parish community members in sustainable management of land and forest resources, village and savings loans schemes (VSL), bee keeping and production of environmentally friendly cooking stoves. Through the project, targeted parish communities are being trained on how to plant fruit, pine and indigenous trees through training in seedling production. The project has assisted community members to generate local ownership and a positive mindset in producing their own seedlings and managing the nursery establishment of trees. The project will receive a Climate Action Award Certificate and prize of €1,500 to further the project’s mission.
The figures to date:
60 people (men and women) have been trained in energy cooking, bee keeping, village savings and loans, and forest and land management. As a result of this, 6 energy-saving stoves clubs were developed (1 in every parish with up to 120 members and 411 stoves being made and used), 79 village saving groups (VSL) were formed with over 2,000 members; 133 VSL members have opened small businesses with capital borrowed from the VSL groups; houses have been repaired and built; 34 members have brought farm inputs to prepare for the 2020 winter farming season and the 2020-21 rainfed farming season. The 6 parishes in Year 1 have savings to continue their projects and prepare for the future.
Our congratulations to all in the Diocese of Mzuzu on their inspiring project and achievement in obtaining a Misean Cara Climate Award. Best wishes for the future!