Vi Agroforestry launches campaign to spearhead the adoption for Tanzania National agroforestry policy
On 14th November 2019, Vi Agroforestry Tanzania launched a year-long campaign to sensitize the national government on the need to have a National Agroforestry policy.
This campaign is part of local to global initiative that is led by Vi Agroforestry at various regions in East Africa: Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Uganda. With this campaign Vi Agroforestry will challenge the conventional non-climate smart agriculture systems and justify the need for National agroforestry policy. Agroforestry policy shall popularise the agroforestry practices that will contribute to economic growth, food security, rural employment opportunities, restoration of degraded soils and increased adaptation to climate change. All these shall enormously contribute to the National strategy for growth and poverty reduction that aims at achieving Tanzania’s vision 2025.
The process to build justification on why Tanzania needs a National Agroforestry policy has been long coming for the country. Various policies were analysed including the Agriculture policy of 2013, Environmental policy of 1998, and Forest policy of 1997 all of which showed that agroforestry is not mentioned in all the related policies. During the symposium, Vi Agroforestry brought together different stakeholders in related line ministries and sectors to deliberate on the proposed policy offering recommendations and way forward.
The campaign was launched during the National Agroforestry symposium held in Musoma, Tanzania. The symposium which is an annual event brought together over 2000 participants drawn from different sectors, including public and private sectors, government officials, politicians, Civil Society organisations, researchers and scientists and individual farmers.
This year’s theme for the symposium was “agroforestry policy for industrial development” and aimed at popularising the contribution of agroforestry in livelihood improvement and mitigation of the effects of climate change and initiate policy dialogues on the need of national agroforestry policies. “More than 70 % of Tanzanians rely heavily on agriculture and among the biggest challenges facing the country is climate change and environmental degradation which negatively impact agricultural activities leading to poor productivity, and agroforestry is at the very core of ensuring a vibrant agricultural sector and the sustainability of the farmers,” said Hon. Adam Kigoma Malima Regional Commissioner Mara Region, while closing the 3day symposium.
Gracing this year’s symposium was the board of directors. “It really gives new energy to move on in line with our mission for a sustainable environment that enables women and men living in poverty to improve their lives. Our mission fighting poverty and climate change together supporting green and inclusive growth is an important priority for Swedish Development Cooperation” Pia Carlsson Thörnqvist President Board of Directors said
This year’s symposium hosted over 30 exhibitors who showed up in pomp and colour, all demonstrating different agroforestry practices. Emerging top from the 7th position in last year’s symposium was MVIWAU organisation which comprises of 21 farmer groups
Through the symposium, we were able to raise awareness on new agroforestry technologies and share our partnership approach and concept, as well as the experiences, success stories from partners and stakeholders of Vi Agroforestry in Tanzania. From sharing these practices, research findings and policy analysis the symposium culminated in building justification for having Tanzania National Agroforestry policy. These policy dialogues also build a future platform for continuous discussion on the same.