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The Scientifica science fair hosted arboRise on 2 and 3 September 2023. Organised by ETHZ and the University of Zurich, it is the largest science popularisation event in Switzerland. Thanks to the research fund made available by ETH for Development, we were able to carry out a number of important field research projects. 1️⃣ https://arborise.ch/experimentation-sur-les-boulettes-de-graines/?lang=en 2️⃣ https://arborise.ch/premiers-resultats-de-lexperience-sur-les-seedballs/?lang=en 3️⃣ https://arborise.ch/experience-des-seedballs-resultats-finaux/?lang=en 4️⃣ https://arborise.ch/parties-de-jeu-a-diaradouni/?lang=en Thank you to ETH4D for inviting us to the Scientifica stand. We were able to share our learnings with many visitors 👨👩👧👦 and also hold promising discussions with potential future partners! We’re really pleased to have been able to contribute to science-based natural solutions through this research.
12 students from the ISAV are joining the arboRise/GUIDRE team to carry out their end-of-studies work. The Institut Supérieur Agronomique et Vétérinaire de Faranah trains several hundred graduates every year and offers seven types of training in the field of agronomy: agriculture, agroforestry, water and forest environment, rural economics, animal husbandry, rural engineering and agricultural extension. ISAV is directed by Prof. Mabetty Touré, whose doctoral thesis, Les rapports de genre et la filière néré en Haute Guinée (Gender relations and the néré sector in Upper Guinea), was a valuable source of information for arboRise. Our partner GUIDRE has historically maintained close relations with ISAV, since its executive director, Saïdou Marega, is himself a graduate of ISAV and founded GUIDRE when he was still a student. As one of arboRise’s statutory missions is to disseminate its experience, particularly in the academic world (see the course given in Berlin as part of
Once the seeds have been harvested and mixed, they are sown on plots made available by the land families. This activity is done together, as a family or in a group. There’s a lot of energy and laughter during this stage of reforestation: Part of the group makes small holes with the hoe (taba in Malinké) and the other part of the group places the seeds in them: Making these holes (known as “poquets” in specialist language) allows the rootlets to establish themselves easily in the loose soil, and the small cavity retains rainwater for longer. This makes it easier for the seeds to germinate. To go faster, some families make furrows with an ox-drawn plough. This is even more efficient. But not everyone has these luxurious tools. It’s all done in good humour: Over 500 hectares were sown with 5,000,000 seeds from 40 local tree species. Thank you to
Thank you to the management of Ecole Nouvelle de la Suisse Romande, and in particular to Ms Saadia Guetta, for supporting arboRise’s activities! On 10 January 2023, we had the pleasure of presenting arboRise’s activities and the Guinean context to more than 50 pupils aged 10 to 14 from Ecole Nouvelle, all of whom were attentive, curious and very respectful. The teachers were able to continue the discussion with their classes, sometimes focusing on geography, or exploring botanical aspects in greater depth, or even on the theme of “The Man Who Planted Trees“, the short story by Jean Giono that inspired the arboRise project. Above all, the pupils then made and sold tasty pastries, with the proceeds going to the arboRise foundation. Thank you all for this welcome help, which will contribute directly to the fight against global warming and to mitigating its effects on the populations most affected.
The results of stakeholder consultations (1, 2, 3) are sent to all parties in the Stakeholder Feedback Round. In this way, everyone who took part in the meetings can check that what they said has been heard by the project and that arboRise will take it into account. In each village, the results are communicated by means of a poster, which will be displayed for all to see. The village authorities also receive a detailed report to share with the villagers. This closes the circle: knowing the results of the consultation strengthens understanding and mutual trust. The Stakeholder Feedback Round is an essential part of the Gold Standard certification process.
For the second year running, arboRise is providing two days of training as part of the Joint Master in Global Economic Governance & Public Affairs (GEGPA), organised by the Centre International de Formation Européenne and the Luiss School of Government. On the topic of political perspectives on reforestation, we present the arboRise project, the social, economic and environmental context and the governance issues facing such a project in the Global South. This is an opportunity for rich exchanges with the students, for example on gender issues or climate justice. This year, we had the opportunity to take part in the discussion forum organised by the Berlin Global Village, with Michael Küppers-Adebisi (Officer for Diversity & Community Development), Christan Manahl (former EU ambassador to Africa) and Selina Diaby (SYSTEMwandel: Genug für alle! beim BundJugend), on the theme of decolonisation, moderated by Carlotta During from the European Academy Berlin. Our thanks go
Collecting the seeds of our 40 local tree species is the very first step of a reforestation campaign. It’s the job of the representatives of the 250 “seed families”: in each village, the women involved in the arboRise project collect the seeds of their seed tree. Each woman has a tree of a different species, to ensure the best possible biodiversity. Each harvester then brings her 20,000 seeds to the village centre, where they are counted and paid for. This is also an opportunity for our partner GUIDRE to assess the quality of the seeds delivered. Then all the seeds from the different seed trees are mixed together and divided into piles, which are then put into bags and given to the “field families” who will be responsible for sowing the seeds. Do the math: collecting the seeds means 5,000,000 seeds ! Spread over 500 hectares, that’s 10,000 seeds per