With funding from the UN Food Agriculture Organization (FAO) through the European Union (EU), the National Union of Community Forestry Development Committee (NUCFDC) has completed a one-day workshop aimed at increasing the participation of women in the forests management and governance sector.
NUCFDC is the umbrella organization of Community Forest Development Committees (CFDC) that ensures the management and governance of forest resources in affected communities. The recent workshop held in Gbarnga City, Bong County, built the leadership capacity of 20 women chosen from forest-affected communities in Nimba and Gbarpolu Counties.
According to Andrew Zelemen, head of the secretariat at NUCFDC, the workshop is a series of training that targets 100 women in seven counties where commercial logging activities are carried out. He said that the women were trained in how to manage and govern resources of the forest, especially the ones that derive from concessions.
Zelemen told the Daily Observer that women in forest communities are being left behind in playing key leadership roles in forest management and governance issues.
“Just a little percentage of women are found participating in the decision-making processes of forest management. Consequently, this project mandates the training of more women to decide how the resources of the forest will be used for the development of their communities,” he said.
Mr. Zelemen further said that women are being encouraged to form part of the various community forest management committees so that they can compete with their male counterparts in the leadership of forest management and governance.
According to the NUCFDC head for secretariat, the women are very impressed with the level of training being provided by his organization, something he said that the women are excited to seek for leadership position within the CFDC in the various communities.
The training was held under the theme “Sustaining Gains, Improvise Community capacity to monitor and properly manage benefits from commercial logging in Liberia.”
It can be recalled that NUCFDC in November last year signed a partnership agreement worth US$99,745 with the FAO to strengthen the capacity of forest communities to effectively monitor the benefits from commercial logging in the country. Part of the activities of the agreement is to increase the participation of women in the leadership of forest management and governance.