A Tammari house in Koutammakou, Land of the Batammariba and a UNESCO World Heritage site in Togo. Photo credits: Erik Kristensen/Wikipedia

The African Forest Forum (AFF) will hold two round table discussions with the media during a regional workshop on “Sharing of knowledge and experiences to strengthen collaboration among stakeholders in African forestry” that will be held from 26 to 30 September 2016 at the Hotel Novela Star in Lome Togo.

The media roundtable discussions will provide direct interaction between journalists, forestry experts, policymakers, training institutions, private sector, NGOs and others on priority and emerging issues on sustainable forest management (SFM) and resilience to climate change by forests and trees as well as the people who depend on these resources. The session – led by a panel of international experts – will detail successful results obtained by AFF and partners during the last two years from its work and provide information on the following issues:

1. Managing forests for improved livelihoods and environment under climate change. The workshop will discuss issues on forest restoration; forest resilience to climate change; vulnerability to climate change on women, youth and marginalized groups in various forest types; key elements of the forest sector that have potential to contribute to green economy; disaster risk reduction as it relates to forests and trees

2. Building SFM in Africa: key areas that continue to receive inadequate attention, apart from climate change, and are critical for raising healthy African forests.  Roundtable discussions will revolve around issues related to the state of forest and tree germ plasm on the continent, handling of pests and diseases related to trees and forests in Africa, and some aspects of good forest governance and law enforcement.

3. Experiences and lessons with handling climate change in African forestry. The discussions around this theme will include some aspects of mitigation and adaptation in African forestry (e.g. resilience of social systems and ecosystems; approaches in AFOLU, progress on implementation of REDD+, CDM, and NAMAS); capacity building for Rapid Carbon Stock Appraisals (RaCSA) on the continent, as well as some observations on shifts in land use in the context of production of food-fuel-fibre nexus on the continent.

4. Wood processing and marketing and trade in forest products and services. This is a fairly neglected area in African forestry. Panelists will discuss some key issues in the African wood processing sector. Topics will include public-private partnerships in wood processing and trade; key highlights on marketing and trade in forest products-legal and illegal trade; certification of forest products.

5. The policy arena: linking the forestry sector to the policy environment. The discussions will revolve around : the catalytic role of AFF to African delegates to international negotiations; capacity building for African delegates to international negotiations; experiences and lessons from international negotiations related to forestry; monitoring and reporting on compliance to Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) related to forests in Africa; views on forestry in sub-regional economic integration as well as experiences with Regional Economic Communities (RECs).

The media roundtable will provide a platform to engage in discussions on the contribution of forests to national economies and rural livelihoods by making reference to evidence based studies undertaken by AFF and partners. The aim is to strengthen collaboration between various African media and stakeholders with the ultimate aim being to facilitate wider knowledge exchange and sharing of experiences that could better profile the forest sector. The event will also enhance visibility of participating countries and other stakeholders wishing to accentuate their commitment to SFM and forestry related climate change issues in Africa.

Where and when?

The knowledge exchange media roundtable will be held as two side events to the 5 day regional workshop Hotel at the Novela Star, Lomé, Togo. Journalists are invited to attend and cover the roundtable discussions on:

Date: Tuesday 27 and Thursday 29 September 2016

Time: 16:00-17:30

Duration: 1.5 hours

Languages: English and French

Welcome remarks: Prof. Godwin Kowero, Executive Secretary African Forest Forum (AFF)

Moderator: Alex Chamwada, International Journalist/ Special Correspondent – KTN Kenya

How can I participate? Participation is by registration only

Interviews and press releases: Journalists interested in interviewing panelists and other delegates to the workshop are advised to contact the Press Officer for the regional workshop @ d.gitonga@cgiar.org

Note to editors

The knowledge exchange media roundtable along with the regional workshop on “Sharing of knowledge and experiences to strengthen collaboration among stakeholders in African forestry” are organized by, the African Forest Forum, with support from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida).

The African Forest Forum (AFF) is a pan-African non-governmental organization with its headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. It is an association of individuals who share the quest for and commitment to the sustainable management, use and conservation of the forest and tree resources of Africa for the socio- economic wellbeing of its people and for the stability and improvement of its environment. The purpose of AFF is to provide a platform and create an enabling environment for independent and objective analysis, advocacy and advice on relevant policy and technical issues pertaining to achieving sustainable management, use and conservation of Africa’s forest and tree resources as part of efforts to reduce poverty, promote gender equality, and economic and social development.

For further information, please contact:

Executive Secretary

African Forest Forum (AFF)

United Nations Avenue, Gigiri

P.O. Box 30677 – 00100, Nairobi, Kenya

Tel.:+254 20 722 4203, Fax: + 254 20 722 4001/ 4181

Email: exec.sec@afforum.org; g.kowero@cgiar.org  Website: www.afforum.org   

For further information, click below to download the full press release in English and French.

Knowledge exchange media round table: Intensifying partnerships in African forestry

TABLE RONDE MEDIATIQUE SUR L’ECHANGE DE CONNAISSANCES: Intensifier les partenariats dans le secteur forestier en Afrique