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Project information

Fighting for Forests

Forests are home to 300 million people and 80% of all land-based species. A Rocha is helping to protect some of the world’s most important forests, studying the wildlife, and helping forest communities to protect their environment and improve their quality of life.

January 2013 - December 2013

Charity information: A Rocha International

A Rocha International logo
  • Need


    It is imperative that we act to save our tropical forests across the globe. These forests are under threat of deforestation (loss of original forest), fragmentation (leaving just forest patches) and degradation (reduction of forest productivity) due to human activities such as expanding agriculture, illegal logging and over-extraction, as well as natural disasters like disease, pests and changes in climate. This loss of forests also has serious economic impact for forest communities.


    A Rocha works to combat these issues on several levels. We protect forests by stopping deforestation, planting new forests with native species and helping communities to generate income without depleting forest resources. We look at alternative livelihood options (such as bee keeping, fisheries, basketry) for communities who depend on the forests for their income, and we conduct research so that we better understand how forest ecosystems work and how we can protect them more effectively.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To help provide for forest communities who rely on the forests for their income and livelihoods.


    » Teaching bee-keeping, basketry, craft making, fisheries and providing access to goods and services.

    What success will look like

    Success will be less illegal logging of the forest to raise income, because forest community livelihoods are instead supplemented from sustainable business options.

    Aim 2

    To protect the forests.


    » Conducting research to identify what species are in the forest and better understand how the ecosystems function.
    » Studying the drivers of deforestation--such as illegal logging and encroachment from expanding agriculture.

    What success will look like

    Success will be publishing data in scientific journals that help to inform us about the drivers and ways to help protect forests and working with communities to decrease threats.

  • Impact


    Less deforestation and degradation of the forests we monitor, new sources of income for the forest communities, reduction in biodiversity loss and a better understanding of the underlying causes of the damage.


    Lack of community engagement and belief in the need to save the forests and a successful provision of alternative livelihoods.


    Funders of this project will receive a six month and final year-end report outlining the current progress of the project and at year-end on the ways the activities made a difference to the forest communities and overall forest degradation and loss of biodiversity.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £50,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £20,000 Research Developing joint forestry research projects
      £10,000 Capacity and Training Building the capacity of local scientists
      £10,000 Implementation Collection of data and publishing
      £10,000 Community Conservation Developing alternative income sources
  • Background


    The tropical forests that we monitor are located in Peru, Brazil, Kenya, Ghana, South Africa and India.


    Communities who live in and near the tropical forests. Typically these are resource poor communities who live on a hand to mouth existence, often relying on the forest for a source of income and food.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    A Rocha works through grass-roots communities to accomplish its work and believes that by engaging with communities you can really access and transform conservation issues. We have been working on forest protection for many years and have seen remarkable changes in the areas where we've invested. For example more than 200 secondary school-age children were able to attend school in 2010 with funds raised through our eco-tourism project in the Arabuko-Sokoke forest in Kenya.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Dr Martin Kaonga

    Martin Kaonga is our Director of Conservation Science and holds a PhD in environmental science from Cambridge University.

    Janice Weatherley

    Janice is our Conservation Policy and Programmes Manager and has an MSc in Environmental Policy.

A Rocha Peru protects forests