Uganda’s forest cover has in the last 10 years been depleted at a shocking 12%, contributing to over 1 million hectares of forest cover loss, and making Uganda so vulnerable to climate change disasters.
We have witnessed catastrophic events in the Western and Eastern parts of the country and most of these are due to the fact that rain water has no barriers to hold it or reduce on the speed at which it flows. In Oct 2018, Uganda woke up to news of people getting killed by landslides that swept Bududa district which left more than 40 people dead, thousands displaced and property worth millions destroyed. Kasese district is another area that has seen the wrath of floods as river nyamwamba overflows and bursts its banks, causing most part of the district near this river flooding. In the Capital City of Kampala, it is so common to experience floods every time it rains so heavily.
Because of this, several organizations have come up to try as much as possible to avert this trend. There has been climate change drives geared towards restoring the lost forest cover to save these areas that are prone to disasters from witnessing more of these floods. One of these organizations working to reverse the trend of climate change disasters in Uganda is Tree Adoption Uganda (TAU), is a youth-centric NGO powered by the vision of creating communities where people and nature flourish has implemented projects that are geared towards landscape restoration especially tree planting, climate education and community sensitization about the global challenge.
With financial support from AFR100 and under the supervision of One Tree Planted, Tree Adoption Uganda embarked on a drive to restore the lost forest cover in the eastern part of Uganda, covering the districts of Bududa, Soroti and Ngora. More than 50,000 trees have been planted in these districts and more in the central districts of Luwero and Nakaseke.
In addition to planting of the trees, Tree Adoption Uganda makes regular filed visits to check on these trees and we also continuously advise farmers on the best ways to take care of these trees. “It makes no sense to plant for example ten thousand trees and you don’t have any tree surviving so it is very important to make field visits”, said Simon.
The Tree Species
Simon Peter Okoth, the projects officer in charge of field operations said tree adoption plants indigenous trees that are good for the natural biodiversity and are carry no harm on to the soil and grow at a fast rate. Simon further highlighted that these trees have several other advantages and this is what makes them the preferred choice as compared to other tree species.