Here at Wildflower Favours, we are proud to support the work of Tree Aid with our charity wedding favours. Tree Aid works in the drylands of Africa, planting trees and helping to build thriving and sustainable communities. In Africa trees mean life and they provide communities with food and income through selling tree products. Over the last 30 years we have grown 15.8 million trees and helped over one million villagers in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mali and Niger.
One of the people Tree Aid has supported is Kazengo, a 70 year old grandmother from Burkina Faso.
Kazengo joined Tree Aid’s Forest Governance project and was shown how to protect the trees from further deforestation. Trees improve soil quality for better harvests, reduce soil loss through flooding and increase biodiversity as well as being a source of food and income. As Kazengo says:
“The forest has changed a lot since I was a girl and I am very sad that the forest resources are disappearing. There used to be a thick and dense forest in our village which produced lots of fruit for us to eat and was home to antelope and big cats.
Over time the forest has become barren and the animals have moved on. Logging by companies and villagers using the trees for firewood has meant the forest has been overused and hasn’t recovered.
There is a big difference now, through Tree Aid’s projects you can see where the forest is protected and we can harvest fruits from the trees. I am teaching my family how to protect the forest, our children will be the future and it is important they learn the techniques from us so that the forest keeps regenerating, protecting the environment and producing food for people.”
Another area of Tree Aid’s help is in deforestation issues. Rural households in Yako, Burkina Faso, for example, depend on trees to provide them with food and income but high deforestation is contributing to poverty in the area. Women are the most severely affected by deforestation, relying on forest resources for their income, but they are excluded from forest management. Only 3.8% of women earn a wage and their only opportunities to earn an income are from selling non-timber forest products.
Tree Aid, via the Women’s Forest Livelihoods project is aiming to improve women’s access to and management of forests and forest resources. Through the formation of six Women’s Forest Management Groups, women will be trained to manage forests and the Project will help support the establishment of 6 tree nurseries, managed by women. 84,000 seedlings will be planted.
Tree Aid supports six women’s beekeeping groups and eighteen women’s shea nut butter groups, enabling these women to establish businesses and earn their own incomes for the first time.
You can help people like Kazengo and the Womens’ Forest Livelihoods Project by buying our Tree Aid charity wedding favours seed packets – we make a donation to Tree Aid of 20p from every charity wedding favour sold. You will be helping people in Africa and also our native British bees because the seed packets contain British-grown British wildflower species that bees love.