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Women are on the frontline of the climate crisis and deforestation. Forest loss degrades soil, reduces biodiversity and intensifies drought – compounded by increasingly extreme weather. Responsible for food, water and firewood women are the most vulnerable from these impacts – catalysed by COVID-19.
Yet, empowered women are proven leaders in their community.
Educating girls breaks the poverty cycle. Salaries rise, early marriage is reduced, health improves and economies strengthen. As opportunity increases population growth decreases, reducing pressure on natural resources and increasing environmental conservation.
But female schooling is marginalised, particularly when girls hit puberty.
Over 80% of girls in Uganda skip school during their period each month.
30% drop out altogether.
Sanitary products have become extortionately expensive and rare. Schools have inadequate facilities. Girls also fear being bullied. So girls go absent, negatively impacting their studies. This increases cultural pressures, forcing girls to quit, enter early marriage or even fall pregnancy.
There is a simple, self-sufficient solution.
Through our Girls’ Empowerment Project we equip girls and their communities to better understand female health. We teach them how to create their own reusable sanitary pads from locally sourced materials. We enable them to educate their friends and generate a sustainable income. By ending period poverty, we empower young women to stay in school to realise their full potential.
Help us give girls back their education – to improve quality of life for all.
Deforestation is a global phenomenon caused by a variety of factors. These factors range from large-scale slash and burn practices to unsustainable agriculture to daily community forest destruction.
The regions most impacted by deforestation are highly poverty-stricken and underdeveloped areas. With few options to support their families, often members of impoverished communities are forced to destroy their local environment to survive, such as cutting down trees for construction, fuel, heat, and agricultural purposes. While this solves a short-term problem, long-term consequences arise when forests are cut down and not restored. The impact of deforestation is dramatic because it causes severe flooding, erosion, and desertification. The long-term effects of deforestation lead to even worse environmental devastation.
There are two key elements to successful reforestation. The first element is that reforestation must present a benefit to the local population. Due to the unsustainable relationship between the land and people, communities suffering from deforestation are often the same as those living in extreme poverty. It is essential to be committed to and work alongside local villages and communities to achieve a successful and longstanding reforestation effort. Eden Reforestation Projects utilizes its Employ to Plant methodology to benefit members in the local communities where we plant. Through steady employment, people living in extreme poverty can begin to afford daily necessities such as food, shelter, clothing, and medicine.
The second critical element rests in funding. Without donors, business partners, and grants, there is little hope for successful and impactful reforestation.
We know that for communities to maintain sustainable access to education, they must have full ownership of the services installed. We work with the communities to develop every initiative, and local coordinators run training programs which support local teachers with the maintenance and integration of technology into their existing teaching goals and learning outcomes.
The result? Community members will not have to rely on long-term Simbi Foundation support and can instead pave their own way forwards, boosting self-reliance.