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EIF awards grant for long-term water and fire management in the Nyae Nyae Conservancy
The Environmental Investment Fund (EIF) of Namibia has made more than N$1,9 million available to the Nyae Nyae Conservancy to help manage fire and water within the conservancy. Thereby protecting and safeguarding the livelihoods of the residents of this Conservancy in the Otjozondjupa region. This grant and the projects which it will facilitate are part of a bigger scheme to create climate resilient livelihoods through Community Based Natural Resource Management (CBRM) in Namibia.
Namibia, like all countries is taking steps and implementing measures to counter and combat climate change. The Land of the Brave is a country of extremes and droughts and heat have a real and significant impact on the country, its agriculture, its people and their livelihoods. Through the EIF grant that the Nyae Nyae Conservancy has been awarded, climate change adaptation measures will be supported amongst its San community.
Environmental Investment Fund empowers Nyae Nyae
EIF is empowering the Nyae Nyae community to actively manage their environment in terms of fire and water with this grant. Nyae Nyae has proven the effectiveness of their fire management approach and has dramatically improved food security in recent years. This grant will help them further develop these endeavours. This San community is actively adapting to the climate changes they are experiencing. Demonstrating and realising that the time is now for them to act and save their environment and taking responsibility for their future.
Namibia is a dry country, we all know that. Its people have manged to live, survive and thrive here for thousands of years. However, the San who live and care for the areas where they live, called conservancies noticed a trend. A dangerous trend, where an increasingly large part of the conservancy was damaged by fire on an annual basis. If not addressed the impact of increasing uncontrolled fires on the community as well as fauna and flora in the area would have been devastating. The lack of rain and water is another aspect which needs to be addressed long term and solutions need to be created and rolled out to ensure long term survival of the Conservancy residents.
Community Forest in the Nyae Nyae community
Since 2014, as a registered Community Forest, the Nyae Nyae community started to pro-actively manage fire using methods that they had traditionally used. This involved burning around villages and precious resources in the winter months when the threat of uncontrolled fires was reduced and close monitoring of fires by satellite. With the EIF grant these activities can now continue. As will activities to counter the droughts and ensure water management and water saving features now and in the future. Especially as the climate becomes more extreme this will be essential. These activities will fulfil the Community Based Natural Resource Management (CBRM) mission to empower and adapt as a nation and its people.
Xoan/’an /Ai!ae, Chairperson of the Nyae Nyae Conservancy stated; “We are very grateful for the EIF grant and it means a great deal for our Conservancy and our people. It also symbolises Harambee, as it shows that if we as a nation pull together and pull our resources to assist one group…we are in fact assisting all Namibians.”
"Eradicating poverty" - An inspiring speech by President Dr Hage Geingob
At the grant award ceremony at Windhoek Country Club, the Nation’s President His Excellency Dr Hage Geingob, gave an inspiring speech highlighting the need to focus on poverty eradication especially amongst Namibia’s rural communities. Only by eradicating poverty will the gini coefficient, that indicates the inequality between Namibia’s richest and poorest be improved.