Sustainable Land Management (Olenguruone forest)
February 16, 2021
The need for forest products within Olenguruone Forest (and indeed the larger Mau Forest Complex) has exerted much pressure upon it leading to unsustainable exploitation of the same. The ecological consequences have been dire and far reaching both environmentally, socially and economically both to the community within the complex as well as critical sectors that are backbone of the country’s GDP. Of the major concern is the deteriorating state of the Mara River and indeed the entire basin. Most of its tributaries in the upper section emanates from the larger Olenguruone Division.
In 2012-2016, NCCK in conjunction with Olenguruone Community Forest Association initiated Sustainable Land Management (SLM) project. Olenguruone CFA was one of the beneficiaries. The aim of the project was to “kill two birds using one stone” thus support interventions that will both result in not only conservation of natural resources within Mau-Mara Basin through best farming practices, but also enhance community livelihoods.
Supporting group tree nurseries has been one of the success stories in the project. One of the tree nurseries called Junction Bamboo Tree Nurseries has been able to raise over 10,000 grafted avocados since 2017. Its 30 members have been able to plant some in their farms as well as sell some to the needy farmers within Olenguruone and other surrounding sub-counties and counties such as Bomet, Baringo and Kericho. Those members and farmers who planted the seedlings from the nursery before 2018 have already harvested and sold the fruits to reputable buying and exporting companies from as far as Nairobi. Hass variety had been selling like hot cake and several of these companies trooped to Olenguruone this year in such of this ‘green gold’