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Improved community livelihoods through Participatory Forest Management Plan

Improved community livelihoods through Participatory Forest Management Plan


ERMIS Africa has been involved in development of Participatory Forest Management Plans (PFMP) for various forest adjacent and dependent communities in Kenya. The PFMPs are meant to guide and assist the core stakeholders - Community Forest Associations ( CFA) and the Kenya Forest Service (KFS) - to co-manage the forest resources sustainably as per Kenya's Forests Act, 2005.

ERMIS Africa has spearheaded the development of various PFMPs for a number of CFAs in various forests including Sururu, Uplands, Koibatek and Cheptais Forests among others. The PFMPs are instrumental in ensuring the conservation of natural and planted forests as well as facilitating the utilization of forest resource (wood and non-wood products) in a controlled manner that would allow for effective monitoring and timely interventions where there are threats.
The Forests Act 2005 provides for the engagement of local communities in forest management through Participatory Forest Management (PFM). Under the arrangement, local communities are expected to come together, form and register an association, and apply to the director, KFS to be enjoined in management of the respective forest. Most of the CFAs that ERMIS Africa has technically supported in development of PFMP are formed on this basis. The Forest Act provides a framework upon which CFA will enter into management agreement with KFS to implement this management plan. It is expected that, the co-management will result to sustainable management of concerned forest and contribute to improved local community livelihoods.

The PFMPs are developed through a wide and in-depth consultative and participatory process that include intensive field surveys, intimate dialogues and critical analysis and a succinct synthesis of the numerous aspirations from multi-stakeholder into a Participatory Forest Management Plan. The process engaged persons form all groups in the local community including; elders and youth with affirmed gender equity, government, civil society organizations and the private sector.