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2018/19/20 - Senegal/Gambia
Landscape of the Year 2018-2019 Senegal/The Gambia News (5)
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© Eve Andersson/Gambia Tourist Board

Nature and biodiversity conservation in the "Landscape of the Year"  

The region chosen as "Landscape of the Year 2018/2019 – Senegal-The Gambia" is located in the vicinity of Koungheul (Senegal) and Janjanbureh (The Gambia) – two cities on the border of the Sahel zone – and is marked by the impact of climate change. On the Senegalese side, the effects on vegetation and biodiversity are particularly evident. The Gambian side benefits from the Gambia River, which plays an important role in maintaining biodiversity. 

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Landscape of the Year 2018-2019 Senegal/Gambia News (4)
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© ASAN

Naturefriends planting fruit trees in the Landscape of the Year

In the past a core task of Naturefriends in Africa consisted of reforestation and planting projects. This holds also true with Senegalese Naturefriends, who have been planting trees in the public space for more than 30 years with seedlings from their own tree nursery. In recent years, Senegal's agriculture has suffered massively from the effects of climate change, and the yields have declined dramatically due to lack of or irregular rainfall. Inspired by experiences in The Gambia, Senegalese Naturefriends have been re-orientating their planting activity away from public areas, towards fruit trees in the family gardens ("concessions"). Thus, the villages are being offered prospects for an increase in family income and also for increased self-sufficiency with fresh or self-processed fruits.

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Landscape of the Year 2018-2019 Senegal/Gambia News (3)
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© Jane Smith

Sustainable tourism in the Landscape of the Year

The area selected as Landscape of the Year is only marginally developed for tourism. The idea behind this project – jointly organised by Naturefriends International and Senegalese Naturefriends with their partners – is to launch (Senegal) or to restore (Gambia) responsible tourism in the region, with a view to providing new or additional sources of income for the population. This is also in line with the ideas and plans of the local authorities.

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Landscape of the Year 2018-2019 Senegal/Gambia News (2)
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© ASAN

Landscape of the Year 2018/2019 Senegal/The Gambia: Stakeholder meeting in Koungheul, Senegal

From 21 to 23 July 2017, a stakeholder workshop was held in Koungheul in preparation of the Landscape of the Year (LoY) 2018/2019 Senegal/The Gambia. The meeting was attended by about 20 participants from the villages participating, ranging from village chiefs to members of the local LoY-committee through the representative of the Ministry of the Environment, the head of the local forestry authority and the press.

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Landscape of the Year 2018-2019 Senegal/Gambia News (1)
koungheul village at the Senegal Gambia border
Koungheul Dorf an in der Granzregion Senegal Gambia

Agreement on Forest Resources and Wildlife Management between Senegal and the Gambia

Due to the successful political changes in the Gambia, conditions for the cooperation between Senegalese Naturefriends and their partners across the border improved tremendously. Extensive woodlands in the border regions of the two countries have suffered strongly because of illegal deforestation and overuse. Now, both countries had their Ministries for the Environment sign a cooperation agreement in April 2017 regarding the responsible use of forest resources close to the border.

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