AFF organized a workshop from 8 – 10 July 2014, in Nairobi, Kenya, that shared the results and experiences with stakeholders on the work undertaken by AFF contracted experts in 2012/2013 in Eastern and Southern Africa on how climate change is featuring in sub-Sahara African forestry.
Mr Gideon Gathara, the Conservation Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, Government of Kenya opened the workshop. In his opening speech Mr Gathara highlighted various issues in line with the overall goal of the AFF’s project on “African forests, people and climate change”. He hoped that at the end of the workshop participants would gain a better understanding of how climate change issues could be or are being handled using tree and forest resources, in addition to how they could facilitate farmers and other land-based stakeholders to take advantage of climate change initiatives in rehabilitating degraded lands and forest resources.
The workshop was attended by 39 participants from Botswana, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, South Africa, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zimbabwe. By gender, 15% of the participants were female.
As part of the key recommendations of the workshop, AFF was tasked to look into assessing the new and emerging capacity in knowledge and skills in forest education and climate change in Africa. AFF was further urged to share experiences gained on implementation of the activities to assist in decision making in various national governments especially on the issues of forestry and climate change as well as capacity building requirements and organize a workshop consisting of professionals and users of forestry resources in generating ideas that will support the development of forestry education in Africa. Other areas identified for AFF to contribute to include the development of a harmonized accreditation process embracing that of universities offering forest education. The participants felt that there was an urgent need for AFF to link up with national professional forestry associations in order to develop harmonized accreditation process for various universities in Africa offering forest education. Finally, the participants felt that no other institution was better placed like AFF to spearhead the formation of a regional national professional forest association whose membership is the forestry national professional associations to develop structures for formulating harmonized accreditation processes.