Project information

Tree Planting for Watersheds

GBM’s watershed-based approach ensures that our tree planting work is focused along critical river watersheds. It allows us to identify the most effective tree planting locations, which will maximize the benefits derived from each tree planted within a particular watershed.

May 2013 - June 2016

Charity information: Green Belt Movement International - Europe

Green Belt Movement International - Europe logo
  • Need


    Kenya's five 'water towers" generate more than half of the country's electricity, and feeds the reservoirs of the capital city of Nairobi. But the water retention capacity of the range's abundant forest cover has suffered due to farming and harvesting of forest products.


    The watershed approach was seen as a better way to identify where we need to work to conserve watersheds so that they continue to provide ecosystem services to the communities adjacent to forests and rivers.By considering the whole area as a community, organisations can promote action that benefits all who rely on the water within it, leaving nobody high and dry.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Improve the natural environment and the resilience of local communities to climate change impacts


    » Targeting 100 people per watershed to attend initial mobilization seminars to further discuss specific community needs and introduce GBM approach.
    » Training Community Based Water Monitors (CBWM) on appropriate technologies to gather accurate information on water and watersheds
    » Conducting 6 (1 seminars per watershed) Community Empowerment and Education (CEE) seminars
    » Plantation of 288,333 per watershed (90% indigenous) over three years on 900 hectares of gazetted forests and public lands

    What success will look like

    900 ha of ofrest land regenarated and improved soil fertility

    Aim 2

    Improve food security for the most disadvantaged people and equip and support farming households


    » Conduct technical/skills training on water harvesting, organic farming, agroforestry, apiculture workshops and nature based enterprise developmnt

    What success will look like

    farmers and women's community groups will have access and knowledge to sustainable livelihoods

    Aim 3

    improve access for the most vulnerable people in Kenya to generating additional income


    » Provide direct financial support through a stipend of 11 KSh (£0.08) for each tree surviving after being planted out for 6 months.
    » incorporate nature based enterprises into the conservation work to provide non extractive income sources.

    What success will look like

    farmers and women's communiy groups will have formed enterprises

    Aim 4

    Empower communities, including women and disadvantaged people, to speak out on human rights


    » Provide advocacy support and conduct advocacy workshops at the network level in order to empower beneficiaries rural communities
    » Assist communities to access legal redress through the court process on civil and criminal law matters, organising meetings with government officers
    » organize workshops with the topic of leadership skill, public speaking, and networking

    What success will look like

    women and disadvantaged community groups will gain access and knowledge to law resources and form of communication

  • Impact


    combining capacity building and environmental restoration activities acommunities are empowered to provide sustainable livelihooods and to become resiliant to climate change impact. The success will be demonstrated by the number of people that participated to our trainings, what they learnt and their capacity to apply their knowledge in their land.


    Community risks: Land tenure can be a challenge when the rights to carbon/ecosystem services/trees are not respected due to intense focus on forests. The likelihood of this occurring is high if there is not strong and effective stakeholder participation. By building strong relationships and participation with all the actors involved, we will be able to manage this risk. Above all, by engaging the provincial administration and government departments to continue to support and remain involved.


    By interim (6 months) narrative reports and annual narrative and financial reports. We will update as well with news from the ground on our website and blog section.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £585,505

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £169,000 Salaries field staff and management staff uk
      £205,000 training training for beneficiaries and GBM staff and volunteers
      £32,225 travel international and internal travel
      £47,630 office suplies GBM headquarter
      £42,500 monitoring monitoring and evanualtion, interim and annual
      £44,000 vehicle one veichle
      £45,150 overheads UK office

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    The Nature Conservancy £94,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Aberdare forest Ecosystem, central Kenya


    8,940 rural community members (80% women) involved in the project will gain economic empowerment from both the income received for trees planted as well as through other Income Generating Activities such as beekeeping and eco-tourism.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    GBM is an established world leader in work related to forests and climate change and through its community network of over 4000 groups it has planted over 51 million trees in Kenya. GBM uses tree planting as an entry point to mobilize women and their communities. It is for this holistic approach, based on the premise that sustainable development can take place when the linkages between environment, poverty and conflict are understood, that Professor Maathai was awarded the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Francesca De Gasparis


    Emanuela Piccolo

    Projects and Funding Officer

    Edward Wageni

    Director of Programmes GBM Kenya office