Land, water and biodiversity are the most vital natural resources bestowed on earth. Unfortunately we continued to exhaust these resources without even thinking to restore. Degradation of land and ecosystems as a result of human activities and climate change threatens and undermines the very basis of peoples’ livelihoods. Also, with a future of climatic uncertainty, no amount of effort can actually make natural resources management possible unless communities are engaged and there comes the role of sustainable livelihoods. We strive to diversify livelihoods and income sources of the rural communities. At the core of ECoDAs’ work is improving food security and livelihoods of the communities and contributing to poverty alleviation.
We focus on:
- Land management in terms of land development, improved agricultural practices, change of cropping pattern, and adoption of new agricultural technology and knowledge.
- Developing deeper understanding on issues related to livelihoods and natural resources;
- Training communities in market value chains and how they can take advantage of price fluctuations. Enabling communities identify chains and directly access markets to generate incomes raises standards of living.
- Diversifying income through the creation of micro-enterprises brings a range of community benefits.
- Issues-focused networking and alliance building;
- Facilitating emergence of self-reliant community conservation groups and cooperatives;
- Cooperative education and facilitating understanding amongst cooperatives on marketing;
- Effective dialogue and coordination with likeminded individuals and institutions.
The work breaks the unhealthy dependency on rapidly depleting natural resources as it helps save wildlife, conserve the forest and stabilize the environment. Thus, ECoDAs integrates wildlife conservation and forest rehabilitation with agriculture, sustainable Non-Timber Forest Products collection and marketing, beekeeping and livestock breeding. Additionally, we assist communities establish savings in groups to ensure that all beneficiaries have access to a small supply of disposable income to invest or use in emergency, and also important means to provide beneficiaries with the ability to purchase necessary materials for continuation. This approach empowers rural communities with choices over their livelihoods, natural resources and futures.