WeForest Project


Ethiopia Amhara

A community based approach to restore degraded lands
Area restored
550 ha
Trees planted

Project Summary

In the Machakel Wereda in Ethiopia, the local community is at the heart of our restoration project, by planting indigenous trees on community land, gullies, river banks and farmland, and planting fruit and timber trees on farms. Training is an important aspect of this project, where in the innovative "train the trainer model" locals are trained with the intention of providing further training to more individuals in the surrounding villages. This way, the entire community will have the capacity to take the future of their forests into their own hands.

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    Seedlings growing at one of the nurseries
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    Workers take care of the young seedlings
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    Soil erosion due to deforestation
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    Empowering local communities
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    Local women producing teff


Machakel woreda, East-Gojam zone, Amhara region

Project Status


Restoration Approach

Framework planting

Target 2018

185,714 trees

Planting Period

End of June to beginning of August

Project Partners

The Hunger Project


Faidherbia albida, Juniperus procera, Moringa stelapolata, Olea Europea, Pines patuella, Podocarpus, Vernonia mellano gdilon

Project Goals

Restore native forest
Restore degraded lands
Promote economic development
Increase food security

Latest Project News

Why is intervention needed?

Many former forests in the Amhara region have been converted into agricultural land. This, plus the charcoal, fuelwood trade and timber harvesting for construction, have caused widespread deforestation. As a result, extensive erosion and gully formation make it hard to grow crops and raise livestock. In summary, this degraded forest is now not even good land for agriculture anymore!

Ecological restoration

With the support of the surrounding community, a switch to a forest friendly economy was started. Native tree species are now grown in community nurseries, no-go zones have been agreed to prevent animals from grazing. Brick production has replaced timber construction and families received energy efficient cook stoves to reduce wood and charcoal consumption: all to reduce the pressure on forests.

WeForest uses an innovative "train the trainer model" in which each farmer is trained in a specialised topic such as seed collection, propagation, nursery management, tree planting, forest management and sustainable harvesting of non-timber forest products to train other farmers.

Livelihood development

Food security is improved through, for example, the planting of fruit trees on farmland. Furthermore, the project trains community members in alternative income opportunities, such as beekeeping. We try to engage as many women as possible, to make sure the project benefits are felt throughout the community.