ECoDAs Cameroon is a legally registered community conservancy membership organization dedicated to conserving biodiversity, restoring and protecting ecologically sensitive ecosystems, increasing local sensitivity towards forests and wildlife, and supporting sustainable livelihood improvement among rural communities through environmental education, integrated landscape and ecological restoration, protection and conservation of wildlife habitats, and building capacities of local communities in integrated livelihood development options.

ECoDAs is also promoting and facilitating sustainable use and governance of natural resources, building effective local people’s institutions and facilitating collaboration among relevant stakeholders.

The core of ECoDAs’ work is engaging and empowering local people for increased community participation and ownership, so they can ultimately secure their livelihoods independently, protect delicate environments, and sustainably manage and benefit from natural resources around them.

KEY COMPONENTS OF OUR WORK


Sustainable Natural Resource Management

Building on community mobilization as a vital tool for sustainable and effective natural resources management, ECoDAs strengthens community capacity to identify and respond to their needs, providing methods and resources for effective natural resources management through capacity building for communities. ECoDAs also mobilizes communities using a Rights-Based Approach and creating opportunities for conversations among community members, and between rights holders and duty bearers. The process of engaging the community to identify their needs, and to discover ways to plan, implement, and evaluate key activities is important in ensuring sustainable and ongoing community involvement. This principle is driven by our core objective; to empower communities, and to promote economically and ecologically sustainable communities as well as management of natural resources. We also strive to advocate for change of stakeholder and community perspective and behavior through training, workshops, media publications and public awareness campaigns.

Climate Action and Food Security

As majority of Cameroonians in rural areas depend on agriculture and related activities to earn a living, climate patterns play a major role in securing the food and income security of the country as a whole. ECoDAs recognizes the need to enable communities and other stakeholders to respond to the impacts of climate change, including droughts and heavy floods. ECoDAs’ main focus is to support communities as they prepare for and respond to climate change, including mitigating it effects. Additionally, ECoDAs enables farmers to increase their resilience to climate change shocks. ECoDAs works on improving agricultural practices that promote and increase crop production and diversification while at the same time enhancing nutritional outcomes. We support smallholder farmers to diversify and increase their crops yields, to reduce farmers’ vulnerability to the adverse effects of climate change and enable them to adopt improved methods of farming, thus creating sustainable, long term food security.

Integrated Livelihoods Development

Through developing livelihood approaches which incorporate a better understanding of natural resource management, communities can experience more stable incomes, increase their capacity to anticipate and respond to shocks, and see long term beneficial outcomes. The core of this program is for local communities to develop business skills, establish smart value chains, and understand how to access local markets with sustainable products. Thus, ECoDAs’ emphasis is on income generation, income security and enterprise promotion. Income security greatly reduces peoples’ vulnerability to food shortages, poor health and poverty. ECoDAs supports skills training for income generating activity, especially among women’s’ groups, and provides access to the necessary credit. Wherever possible, ECoDAs works with smallholder farmers to promote farming as a business, assisting in providing better produce storage, processing and marketing. ECoDAs’ focus is on creating opportunities for gainful employment that enhance prosperity and well-being at household and community level and take the excessive pressure off of natural resources.

Water, Sanitation and Health

ECoDAs recognizes the importance of water and is working to develop integrated water management schemes, where communities can harness rainwater, improve irrigation practices and recharge ground water to conserve the environment and prevent wells from drying up. ECoDAs’ water security projects aim to provide clean and safe drinking water at household level that benefit rural communities by improving agricultural techniques, thus contributing to peoples livelihoods. ECoDAs also addresses health issues by focusing on hygiene and sanitation, adequate nutrition and the provision of community care. As HIV/AIDS is hugely prevalent in Cameroon. ECoDAs also provides care and support to people and families living with HIV/AIDS.

Environmental Education and Outreach

The basic environmental conservation rule is that “if people are not made to understand why they should conserve, they may not see the need to do so”.  ECoDAs believes that although some people damage nature out of greed and are fully aware of the consequences, many do so from ignorance and/or are compelled by socio-economic inequities and the need to meet their basic needs. One of the key objectives of ECoDAs is to enhance and promote conservation and environmental education programs among young people and the general public on ways to sustainably utilize natural resources, the environment and ecosystem services that they provide. The aim is feeding attitudes and behaviour change, skills, knowledge, and values to prepare environmentally friendly citizens who care and protect nature and instilling a sense of environmental responsibility to Cameroon’s citizens.


STRATEGIC GOAL

ECoDAs focuses on increased community ownership, so they can ultimately secure their livelihoods independently & protect their environment sustainably.

Together we can make our communities better Partner with us to start making the difference today.