Senegal is rich in culture, but like many countries throughout Africa, many citizens face poverty and malnutrition. A majority of them, over 70%, live in rural areas. Their lives and agriculture depend on infrequent and unpredictable rainfall, infertile soil, and pest prevention. The changing global climate has made their situation more desperate. Less than half of the country’s forests remain, and are under constant threat from increased deforestation thanks to the need for fuel and building materials. Uncontrolled slash-and-burn agriculture, peanut farming, and overgrazing further harm the land. Through the process of desertification the Sahel is expanding causing more areas to experience sever draughts.
Trees for the Future is teaching people how sustainable agriculture practices, along with tree planting, solve environmental, social, and economic problems simultaneously. Multipurpose windbreaks, alley cropping, and live fences have turned degraded areas green again and given farmers new hope. We’re now adding income-generating opportunities through agroforestry. Forest gardens are increasingly popular as farmers see the benefit of integrating trees into their gardens. In Kaffrine, farmers last year planted over 170,000 trees in more than 30 communities. They established forest gardens in their fields, integrating a variety of tree species with peanuts, corn, beans, sorghum and vegetable crops. Many are growing live fences, windbreaks and hedgerows, and incorporating fruit trees in their farms. A French organization bought 500,000 Jatropha curcas seedlings from farmers for US $23,000 to develop biodiesel in Louga. In the Southeast, six communities planted live fencing, hedgerows and windbreaks. With more than half a million trees planted, our Senegal program continues to expand through the passion of local community leaders.
We’ve brought local organizations, the Peace Corps, and the Senegalese Ministries of Agriculture and Forestry together at our training facilities. We frequently help facilitate Peace Corps activities and trainings. Other partners include:
Portes et Passages
The Body Shop Foundation