The Itombwe Rainforest in the Democratic Republic of Congo is renowned for its remarkable biodiversity. However, deforestation and resource extraction have threatened the region and the local Indigenous communities who have lived in harmony with the forest for generations.
Women from these communities have been organizing through the Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) to raise awareness and safeguard their homes and nature. This project aims to protect 1.6 million acres of old-growth forest, restore 1,200 square kilometers of decimated areas, and support women’s leadership in conservation. Funds will help women establish nurseries to grow trees for reforestation efforts and build community gardens.
This effort has already proven successful, with an 83% tree survival rate in current reforested areas, and the gardens fed 1,200 families last year. The project enables local women to heal their land and communities while protecting the critical Itombwe Rainforest.