The training modules on forest based climate change adaptation and mitigation are now ready for use. The modules have been specifically designed to match the needs of professionals, technical experts and informal groups such as civil societies and local communities in Africa.
In tandem with its mandate of building the capacity of stakeholders in this subject field, the African Forest Forum (AFF) took the initiative to develop the modules which are expected to facilitate processes that enhances knowledge and skills that could eventually promote advocacy on key issues related to climate change and forests and also craft appropriate policies and plans to safeguard the roles of forests and trees in the context of climate change. Essentially, the modules are expected to contribute towards building capacity and developing skills that supports African people and their institutions to positively manage the impacts of climate change.
The modules were developed on the premise that the continent needs to acquire new and relevant knowledge on climate change issues, in addition to seeking ways to improve how Africa manages and shares knowledge and information on the relationship between forests and climate change.
Publication of the modules is a culmination of a process dating back to November 2012 when AFF organized   a workshop on capacity building and skills development in forest based climate change adaptation and mitigation in Nairobi, Kenya, which drew participants from 22 countries, namely Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Gabon, Zambia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda and Zimbabwe. It was also attended by staff from FAO and ICRAF.
The workshop identified training needs required to address the relationship between forests and climate change for educational and related forestry based training institutions at all levels, and based on agro-ecological regions of Sub-Sahara Africa. These are arid and semi-arid regions, including the Sahelian belt; the savannas and woodlands of West, Eastern and Southern Africa; and the rainforests of West and Central Africa. Separate analyses were done for Anglophone and Lusophone countries as a block, and for Francophone countries as another block, given the different educational systems in these two language blocks.
The modules are divided into three components: Professional, Technical and Informal Groups (i.e. civil society and local communities). In each of the components, a brief introduction is provided followed by an overview, aim, objectives and chapters. In each module, a chapter overview is provided to introduce the reader to the issues addressed in it. This is followed by learning outcomes and contents of the chapter.
Modules for professionals seek to strengthen their capacity to understand, explain, and work with the linkages between forests and climate change, particularly taking actions that could strengthen the role of forests in climate change mitigation and adaptation. The training module for the technical component focuses on understanding the basic science of climate change, adaptation, mitigation, and carbon markets and trade. The component for informal groups training   has specific themes that will be handled in the form of short term training sessions, workshops and seminars, among other modes of delivery.
The modules are developed in both English and French languages.