The Society for Environmental Conservation (SEC), with support from Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) and Birdlife International, has embarked on encouraging people to properly learn about land use and the protection of the environment.
The first of the project, which was held from September 3 to October 12, 2018, impacted four communities that included the home of the late President Samuel K. Doe in Tuzon, Garley Town, Zai and Franzy Towns, Grand Gedeh County.
The executive director of SEC, Henry Smith, said community dwellers in that part of the Southeast and many other parts of country were able to understand that animals and plants do not exist in isolation but are connected to each other and systems of life.
“It is good that people know that all living things are connected to other living things and to their non-living environment (earth forms, rocks and rivers). If one tiny species in an ecosystem becomes extinct, we may not notice or think it’s important, but the biodiversity of that ecosystem will be altered, and all the ecosystems that the species belong to will be affected,” Smith said.
He said participants at the dialogue in each town understood the value of their forest and the biodiversity. “They know the reason why the species in their environment need to be protected for good,” Smith said.
According to him, his organization (SEC) is involved with the facilitation of forest law enforcement in Liberia through workshops, exhibitions, and the Village Saving Loan Associations.
He said with effort, Grand Gedeh can become a county of unity, peace, good governance and quality social, economic and infrastructure development for all in the Southeast.
“We are pleased to note that all the stakeholders who attended the program understood what sustainable land use plan can do and the ability to understand the usage of the Global Positioning System (GPS) on the global biodiversity,” Smith boasted.
He named equal access to opportunities for all Grand Gedeh citizens, assurance of peace, security and the rule of law; and transparent and effective governance as some of the core values associated with the process of promoting education on land use and protecting environments.
Other core values named included sustainable economic growth and preservation of natural resources and environment.
The Forestry Development Authority (FDA) representative who formed part of the tours and discussions, Edward N. Don, said he was pleased with SEC’s move to include communities in discussions intended for the proper upkeep of the environment and its inhabitants, including living and non living things.
Don said, “I want to appreciate the donors, the facilitators and the Society for Environmental Conservation as well. This ongoing program has shown to us that the forest is our natural heritage, we need to protect our forest. In fact, the proposed protected area like Cavalla must be protected for future generation and unborn children as we are hearing it through the facilitators.”
He said the project has been worthwhile and an eye opener, bringing together the forest and the wildlife in the Cavalla Belt.
Alice Momoh, a resident of Garley Town, said she was pleased for SEC and its partners’ assistance to residents in that part of the country, because the initiative has helped to promote the value of love for country.
“I am kindly appealing to the donor to start with the process of raising the ground hogs and snails, to ensure that our forest are not touched,” Momoh said.
Also speaking, Abraham Kaikor, a student from the Agriculture Department of Grand Gedeh Community College, said, “I really thank the donor of this project and those who are on the field for the implementation process. My first advice will go to farmers; they have to know that the donor cares about their future and the future generation. They should embrace this opportunity to know how they can use their land in the proper way that our forest, with everything it contains, is kept safe. We all are hearing what some countries are going through due to climate change.”