What is going on?
Trees are a source of food, building materials, and fuel. However we have a serious deforestation problem
caused by the need for fuel and the impact of war.
Through working with the American Jewish World Service, we have been able
to reforest, change laws, and provide better food security for our community.
Fuel is critical.
In the deep villages we
do not have electric grids, and power even in large cities is not dependable without gasoline-fueled generators. Gas in Uganda is
very expensive, with prices at US$8 a gallon this year.
US$8 for a gallon of gas is expensive in the United States for rich
families. Think of what our families experience when it's that expensive! Our partner families often make less than US$1 per day,
and have many mouths to feed with that dollar. So trees are an important lifeline for our community, though we urge people to use
coal stoves known as "Okello Kuc" stoves. This translates into "peace for the environment."
We also use solar everywhere we can.
Solar saves! However, it doesn't translate well into our cooking. For instance, our cooking must be done early morning and late at
night when the sun is not out. It's hard for us to use solar ovens though we do where it makes sense: commercial cooking, drying foods,
etc. And we promote the use of solar where we have the opportunity to do so.
War and refugee problems scar our landscape.
massive waves of refugees come into our area, the large new population cuts down trees in order to survive. Their situation scars
lives and the landscape.
As a result, we have faced massive deforestation. Recent drought has led to soil erosion and the
death of more trees. Our landscape looks different than when we were born, and we're not that old!
Other critical issues: water
villages have wells, but not too many. Also many don't work because pieces break through overuse and our communities often can't afford
to fix the wells. See one well below in Lira where you have to wait 12 hours to get water. Imagine the time lost just waiting to get
a little water!
Well water isn't even drinkable. We have to boil it over an open fire to kill the germs in it and often we all
get water borne diseases. We need a better way, especially for our partners who were born with HIV/AIDS or have become ill due to
no fault of their own.
This is not acceptable for anyone and certainly not for our brave partners. We have dedicated our lives
to helping our community address this issue. Please help us in supporting our environment!
- During 2009-2010 we created CCYA-University to train 110 community leaders (50 women, 60 men) to plant trees in five
- We helped laws change! After CCYA training, Obim Parish changed its bylaws. Now each villager in the community must plant
at least 20 trees!
- We obtained 2,000 tree seedlings and distribured them to 20 households. Despite prolonged drought, many trees survived.
- When we trained our vulnerable children partners to take care of trees and gave them trees, along with fund to be in school and school
supplies, the kids stayed in school and performed better in their school.
- We advocated through a T-shirt campaign which urged people
to protect the environment through tree-planting.
- We have helped reforest sizeable portions of the Lango subregion, especially around
schools. Each of 12 schools have dedicated at least two hectacres of land to plant trees.
More than 800 students are involved in environmental
protection and conservation clubs we helped start at 12 schools.
In 2010 we opened a tree demonstration garden which is used as a learning
studio for arborists, students, and environmentalists.
We sell some trees. These tree sales help fund CCYA operations.
We do not accept deforestation, lack of access to water, and soil erosion. We are changing this reality and ask for your support.