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Supporting ecosystems & communities

Supporting people to restore the land and reduce poverty in Dugda-Meki.

The project

Since 2017, Tree Aid has been working with communities in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia to restore the ecosystem and reduce poverty in Dugda-Meki. The project is supporting people in the district to restore the environment, build sustainable businesses and grow nutritious food.

Together, we will regenerate degraded land so that it can provide communities with food and incomes, helping them to thrive.

Why is this project needed?

In Ethiopia’s Central Rift Valley, communities rely on the land and forests for food and income. But over 90,000 hectares of forests are being cut down across Ethiopia every year. To make matters worse, around two billion tonnes of fertile soil is lost in the country each year. 

As a result, huge areas of land are no longer able to support plant life, and farming is becoming impossible. Eroded soil then flows down the Meki River into the nearby Lake Ziwaycausing it to dry up as it fills with silt. 

A women's enterprise group holding up their products that they will sell at market.

Our aims

Our project aims to provide people with the tools and training they need to process and sell tree products like shea butter and soap. We are also supporting people to improve their dietary diversity through the distribution of nutritious fruit trees, like mango and papaya. 

Local people are growing trees and learning soil and water conservation methods that will help them restore and protect the land and trees, for years to come. With access to fuel-saving stoves, people will also be able to reduce the amount of fuel they need to cook with.  

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    households will increase their nutritional and food security

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    families will receive fuel-saving stoves

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    hectares will be restored by increasing tree cover

A woman in Ethiopia cooking injera on a fuel-saving stove that she received through a Tree Aid project.

“I like the stove because I can make sauce and injera at the same time, and the flames and smoke are better. I now use as much fuel in one month as I used to use in a week.” Chaltu, Oda Boquete, Ethiopia

Our impact

So far, we have worked with 868 enterprise group members to provide tools and training to process and sell tree products. They have also learned techniques which will help them to restore degraded land. Over 8,000 fruit trees have been distributed, some of which are already fruiting.  

We've supported people to grow more than 200,000 trees and restore 390 hectares of land which is now under sustainable management. 2,775 fuel-saving stoves are now in use, helping to reduce the amount of fuel used for cooking.  

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    hectares restored and managed

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    fuel-saving stoves distributed

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    fruit trees distributed

Our partners

The Dugda-Meki project has been running since June 2017, thanks to funding from RPS. With additional funding from IDH, we have been able to extend the project and support even more people. We are working with Vison of Community Development Association (VoDCA) to implement this project.