Women Conserving the Environment in Tanzania

By Paul Ndiho
November 8, 2011
Recently here in Washington Mary Mavanza, manager of the Jane Goodall Institute’s (JGI) TACARE program in Tanzania was recognized as one of six women heroes of global conservation on Capitol Hill, at an event sponsored by the United Nations Foundation, the Alliance for Global Conservation, and the Green Belt Movement. VOA’s Paul Ndiho talked to Mary Mavanza about her role in helping rural women in Tanzania conserve the environment.

Mavanza says that in most sub Saharan African countries, women are the main providers of water, firewood, food, medicine and other basic necessities. And because they are the most directly connected to the environment, women are the most directly affected by environmental degradation.

The Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) works in western Tanzania with local communities living near key chimpanzee habitats make a living in ways that do not destroy the forest. The program targets 52 villages that surround Gombe National Park, Masito and Ugalla. VOA’S Paul Ndiho’s talks to Emmanuel Mtiti, director, Gombe Masito-Ugalla Ecosystem Program.

Mtiti says that Jane Goodall Institute also educates local communities about global climate change, and sustainable agriculture practices and livelihoods.

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