‘Mobilising More for Climate’

Posted on 08 February 2021
The project seeks to transform community forest management into ecologically friendly businesses
© Ernest Sumelong/WWF
WWF has consulted and collected the views of local and indigenous communities in two councils in the East Region of Cameroon concerning the introduction of a new project, ‘Mobilising More for Climate’ (MoMo4C). The project seeks to strengthen the capacity of the local people to withstand the effects of climate change through sustainable cocoa production, non-timber forest products (NTFPs) commercialization and community forest management.

Consultation meetings organised in Ngoyla and Yokadouma councils collected the views of some 200 stakeholders including promoters of cocoa, non-timber forest products and community forests. Representatives of women groups, youths, the Baka, administrative and council officials, as well as key sectoral ministries (the Environment, Forestry, Agriculture, Social Affairs, Commerce, Decentralisation and Local Administration) were also consulted.

The concerned councils are situated near the Nki and Boumba Bek national parks (constituting the Cameroonian side of the Trinational Dja-Odzala Minkebe – ‘TRIDOM’ landscape, including Gabon and the Republic of Congo). Communities in the TRIDOM landscape, according to a study, are very vulnerable to the effects of climate change, with potential negative impact on agricultural yields and wellbeing. 

To make the communities more resilient to the effects of climate change, WWF is focused on working with communities within the landscape to promote sustainable natural resource use. This includes the promotion of deforestation-free cocoa production as a means of increasing income and reducing pressure on forest resources. MoMo4C will create a community-friendly business environment for the development of climate resilient bankable projects.

 “Through the MoMo4C Project, WWF wants to link local entrepreneurs to banks and investors so that they can transform cocoa production, NTFPs commercialisation and community forest management into ecologically friendly businesses, thereby improving the revenue of the local people,” states Roberty Essama, WWF Cameroon Business and Industries Coordinator.
Initiated with the support of WWF and IUCN Netherlands and Tropenbos International, the five-year project will impact some 90,000 inhabitants. 

During the meetings, the local actors and WWF agreed to create platforms at the level of each council comprising representatives of each of the targeted groups, to ensure their full participation and effective implementation of the project.
Assomo Marie Josée, one of the local actors, expresses optimism at the end of a consultation meeting held in Yokadouma between WWF personnel and a group of cocoa producers. 

“Cocoa is our life. With cocoa we contribute in the fight against poverty here. However, we face several challenges; at times we have partners who don’t supply us with the right products for our farms contributing to poor harvest. We also face the challenge of cultivating our crops well. We lack financial means,” states Madam Assomo.

For Hon. Baloulognoli Maurice (former MP and manager of a community forest) WWF has been providing the communities multiple forms of support for the management of community forests. “This new project comes to add to that and will propel the development of our area within the context of decentralisation,” Baloulognoli said.
The project seeks to transform community forest management into ecologically friendly businesses
© Ernest Sumelong/WWF Enlarge
Baka women collecting non-timber forest products. The project seeks to strengthen commercialisation of this product
© Ernest Sumelong/WWF Enlarge