Mangrove Rehabilitation in Zanzibar

The Sazani Trust is protecting mangrove and seagrass reserves in Zanzibar through community coastal management and livelihood programs supporting adaptation for climate change.

Blue forests are ecosystems made up of mangroves, seagrass beds and saltmarshes which provide vital resources for coastal communities throughout the tropics, including Zanzibar, who are among the poorest and most vulnerable to climate change.

The blue forests protect against coastal erosion, regulate water quality, provide a breeding ground and habitat for countless marine species and supply food and raw materials for local livelihoods. In addition, blue forests sequester 6 times more carbon per unit area than undisturbed tropical rainforest.

Despite only making up 3% of the worlds terrestrial forest cover, 55% of all carbon captured in forests across the globe is blue carbon. However, blue forest ecosystems in Zanzibar are under threat from deforestation and degradation resulting from unsustainable resource extraction, primarily for fuel wood collection.

Despite new legislation, without strengthening local mechanisms for governing mangrove and sea grass reserves communities driven by urgent necessity will continue to over exploit and destroy the remnants of these two habitats.

The Sazani Trust, working with coastal communities in the semi-autonomous government of Zanzibar, aims to establish a system of Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) for avoiding deforestation, the prevention of the destruction of sea grass meadows, the strengthening of local land tenure and rights over marine resources all underpinned through a program of sustainable livelihoods development.

As well as reducing carbon emissions and conserving biodiversity, this project will help to alleviate poverty and increase community resilience in a region under threat from climate change.

Mangrove rehabilitation

Clean Cookstoves in Zanzibar

Sazani Associates, a ‘not for profit’ organisation that forms part of the Sazani Global network, introduced rocket stoves to Zanzibar in 2012 as part of their coastal livelihoods program and has embedded community champions to support the production and use of such stoves. Overcoming social and traditional barriers to their use has been a critical investment and conservation estimates show that the rocket stoves help to reduce fuel wood consumption by up to 50%, as well as reducing the particle size in the resulting smoke, promoting cleaner air and resulting in fewer eye and respiratory health problems in users compared to traditional wood burning. As well as the economic benefits of using rocket stoves, women have more time to engage in other livelihood activities thanks to a lower demand for wood collection and there is a reduced pressure on the fragile local environment.

In the promotion of the rocket stoves, Sazani brought together 15 villages to set up a community cooking enterprise in the form of a self-help federation called Kinamama (meaning “women together” in Swahili). The women were trained to use the new cook stoves in order to set up a low-carbon, fuel efficient and sustainable enterprise producing jams, preserves and dried fruit from the seasonal fruits and spices available locally. With marketing support from Sazani Associates, the women were then able to set up successful contracts with several of the large hotels in the region, many of which placing large orders. In addition, the local crafts and farmers market was established, taking place once a week, to provide a sales platform for Kinamama and other community enterprises to market their products to tourists and engage visitors in local livelihoods. This market provides a regular source of income and helps to promote sustainable business practice. Due to the ongoing success of the Kinamama clean energy enterprise project, the government has allocated a plot of land to Kinamama to build production facilities. The introduction of the stoves in a commercial setting has allowed the communities to learn how to use the stoves and indirectly promoted domestic usage.

Supporting the cost of production and promotion of rocket stoves in Zanzibar through The Sazani Trust and its associate projects therefore has tangible results for carbon emissions reduction, as well as socioeconomic development.

Estimate of how much fuel would be saved annually with 100 stoves= 386261.25 kg of tropical hardwood
1 kg dry wood stores approximately 0.45 kg C (ranging from 0.42 to 0.55 kg C)= 1.65 kg CO2
100 stoves would save approximately 637 tonnes of carbon per annum= 3186 tonnes of carbon over 5 years

Not included in these carbon calculations is the environmental impact of tropical forest losses, which is resulting from the harvesting of fuel wood. At least a portion of the wood cut is from mangrove coastal forests, which are believed to be many times more efficient at trapping carbon than tropical rain forest. Increased fuel efficiency of the rocket stoves will further preserve carbon by decreasing the amount of wood cut from forests and reducing pressure on the islands natural resource base.

CASA Media

In March 2016 Sazani Associates were successfully awarded a small grant from Hub Cymru Africa and The Welsh Government to enable young people in West Wales and Zanzibar to learn about climate change and sustainable development goals from one another’s perspective, to interpret their understanding through digital media and to produce a short film on a climate change or sustainable development issue of their choice.

The young people in Wales are part of the Home School Network and Dr M’z, a youth drop in centre run by Carmarthen Youth Project; whilst the young people from Zanzibar attend one of three secondary schools based in Stone Town.

The CASA participants attended workshops about climate change and sustainable development and were then trained in basic film making using mobile phones and the use of other media equipment. The film workshops covered training on the use of camera, lighting, sound, editing, directing, and script writing. The project ran simultaneously in Zanzibar and Wales and the young people from both countries were able to learn from one another and share ideas, as well as evaluating each other’s films.

Sazani worked in collaboration with Broadside, a Carmarthenshire based film company dedicated to getting youths interested in media. Broadside provides opportunities such as script writing, production, acting and post production to name but a few. Their philosophy is to develop skills in film making and to provide a platform to get young people’s work shown and recognised. Our Zanzibar partners were Keys Media, an organisation set up by young Zanzibari’s to train their peer group in the art of film making and digital communication.

The completed films were shown in Zanzibar to a full house as part of 2017’s Sauti za Busara festival and will be shown in Wales, later this year, as part of the Wales One World Film Festival.

“Through this project I have realised that we are all connected and that how I treat the planet affects other people. I am grateful to the project to teaching me how to manage a project and for encouraging me to improve my organisational skills.” – Bruno, age 14, Wales

“I have gained knowledge about what climate change is and how important it is to protect our environment for the future and to utilise resources that are around us. This is a global problem so it is important to share information and ideas with people from other countries. I have also gained so much knowledge about filming and editing films and will continue to learn more. I’ve really enjoyed this project.” – Abdul Fatakh Abass, age 17, Zanzibar

Vocational Training

Sazani have developed and delivered vocational training in partnership with local African based colleges. Building on local strengths and supporting existing capacity, linking where possible to government provision is what we do. Enterprise for youths and bridging gaps between technical and vocational provision requires an in depth understanding of the local economy.

The biggest challenge in both Africa and Europe is how to support the population of young people not able to find educational opportunities that will give them a livelihood. Both continents have recognized this in numerous policy documents from Somaliland to South Africa and from Greece to Estonia. Sazani have developed and delivered vocational training in partnership with local African based colleges looking at self employment, meeting local demands and supporting an outward critical thinking approach. Supporting learners how to swim in a sea of information is also about teaching them to avoid sharks. Critical Thinking is key. Building on local institutional strengths and supporting existing capacity is what we do.

Teacher Training

Sazani has been working with the Ministry of Education since 2004, our work has focused on rural schools and communities to support the capacity of teachers and adult educators to deliver a quality curriculum contextualized for Zanzibar. Using our country specific resources, we have developed a successful approach for engaging teachers, enriching their curriculum and delivery skills to support sustainable rural livelihood strategies through a range of Continued Professional Development workshops for local teachers. These work within the Healthy and Sustainable Schools framework to develop the skills and expertise of teachers to deliver beyond basic education to build economic and social resilience of learners by concentrating on our life skill focus areas; Health, Global Citizenship and Sustainability Awareness and enterprise skills.

For more information please email our Education Officer.