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                               Green Villages

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In the late nineteenth century, about 30% of Ethiopia was covered with forest. The clearing of land for agricultural use and the cutting of trees for fuel gradually changed the scene, and today forest areas have reduced to less than 4% of Ethiopia's total land. The northern parts of the highlands are almost lost their trees. To alleviate these calamities, the ORDA Ethiopia Forest Landscape Restoration program (FLRP) is being implemented from April 2018- December 2021 in Amahara region 4 woredas (Ebnat, Libokemkem, Farta, and Quarit woredas) with a budget of $ 2.255 million secured from the Norwegian forestry group.

One of the nine green villages established by the project is Qula Yohannes Green Village in Tara Gedam Kebele, Libokemkem Woreda. One of the beneficiaries of the Green Village is Worku Jember, a young farmer. After training and material support through the project, he developed tomatoes and Watermelon in greenhouse technology. In the winter of 2021, he cultivated a watermelon in a 126 m2 wide greenhouse and earned 6,000 birrs. In the second round of summer 2021, he is cultivating tomatoes and selling them for 25 birrs per kilo. With the 6,000 birrs he earned from the sale of Watermelon, he fattened sheep and sold 12,000 birrs. He also plans to continue cultivating vegetables in a greenhouse and fatten a goat side by side.

The project worked to plant seedlings in the affected communal lands / watersheds by making free of animal grazing. The Chezmi Basin in Brukti Kebele, Libokemkem Woreda, is one of the basins that have been kept free of animal grazing. The basin is 130 hectares, and it was barren and degraded where there was no fodder for the animals and no vegetation. The project made watershed management on it in 20119 by free of animal grazing. Subsequently, various seedlings, such as acacia agusistima, fodder, gravelia, and acacia were planted under the project. In the spring, the barren landscape is adorned with indigenous trees such as olive (woyira), kitkita, dedeho, abalo, and adey flowers. Farmers are also reaping and using fodder. Today, olive trees that used to be eaten by animals have become a tree. Mihretu is a supervisor of the Basin guards. He always protects the forest by coordinating the 3 guards under it to keep the basin free from animal grazing and to prevent deforestation.

The project supplied a variety of permanent seedlings, indigenous trees, and fodder for farmers to create green villages. Alemnew Mekonnen is one of the 25 beneficiaries of Shehochu Tahara Kebele in Libokemkem Woreda.

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Alemnew owns only 0.75 hectares of land. He had to rent more farms from other farmers to get more produce. But now, with the help of the project, he has been able to produce enough amount of produce on a small farm. For example, in the winter of 2021, he cultivated watermelon and sold 2,700 birrs at a 126 m2 wide greenhouse. Then, in the summer of 2021, he is growing tomatoes. In the first round, he sold 50 kg of tomatoes for 1,050 birrs. He also did agroforestry work in his farmland, and 70 gravelia, 36 bananas, 40 mangoes, 67 Gesho, 10 papaya seedlings, and 10 bamboo seedlings were planted along his farm boundaries.

                 Green Villages

Overall, the project has rehabilitated 4,556 hectares of damaged basins and degraded areas and enabled indigenous plants to regenerate. In addition, it established nine green villages, constructed 31 greenhouse technologies for cultivating tomatoes, cabbage, and watermelon, provided 37,609 fruit seedlings, distributed 745 solar lanterns for lighting and mobile charging, setting up 6 firewood saving stove production groups and 534 fuel-saving stoves distributed to farmers. Furthermore, the project has played a significant role in improving the livelihoods of farmers by enabling 68 farmers to engage in apiculture and 1,023 in animal fodder development.


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