Manavata Green Belt Movement (MGBM)
The Manavata Green Belt Movement (GBM) uses this 10-point strategy in 2 - phases.
As part of environmental development Manavata has taken a new initiative called Manavata Green Belt Movement (MGBM) and named the Volunteers for such purpose as Manavata Green Volunteers (MGV)
Phase - 1.
This phase focuses on tree plantation on private lands like farms, agricultural lands which are lying waste due to lack of water, or any other privately owned area
The main objective is to plant trees. Whereas the main focus is on helping the women, empowering them, motivating them to form groups to take up this hard work.
This can be achieved by this 10- point strategy described below :
The 10- point strategy:
Step 1 :
Manavata Volunteers along with the field facilitators (specialised in agriculture/nurseries/afforestration) conduct sensitization and mobilization seminars to disseminate information on the importance of tree planting highlighting the benefits and the problems caused by the cutting down trees. These seminars are open to anyone interested in starting a tree nursery. Following these seminars, individuals are invited to form groups. These groups are registered with Manavata. A single individual is not allowed to start/form a group because the objective is to engage as many people as possible within the shortest time.
Step 2 :
Field facilitators/volunteers from Manavata assist interested persons in the formation and registration of groups. The main focus is to involve women.
Groups register as members of the Manavata - Green Belt Movement (MGBM) with the assistance of the field facilitator and Manavata Green Volunteer (MGV). This officially opens up communication and follow-up with the groups and MGBM.
Once registered, the groups receive assistance on the preparation of tree nurseries and seed sowing. The group members collect seeds (indigenous, fruit, and exotic tree species) from the nearby areas or the local forest land or from any other sources and plant them in their nurseries. MGBM also provides some initial seeds of various tree varieties to get the groups started.
Once trees begin to grow, they are transplanted into individual containers or plastic bags in anticipation of distributing them. MGVs assist groups with the writing and submission of monthly reports to MGBM. The reports contain information on the status of the nursery (numbers of trees: exotic, fruit, indigenous), the numbers that are ready for distribution, and any challenges facing the nursery.
Once seedlings are ready to be distributed, the groups announce to their communities (local farmers or anyone who is interested or has volunteered to plant trees in his/her farm or private area) that seedlings are ready for issuing and ask those interested to dig and prepare the holes. MGVs assist in this activity as well. The idea is that no trees will be distributed to persons who are not ready to plant them i.e. haven't made holes for the necessary plantation etc. This reduces wastage since all trees at this stage will be followed up to make sure they are actually planted.
Group members check the holes to ascertain they are properly dug prior to supplying seedlings (2 feet deep and wide, manure applied to holes when soil is poor).
Once holes are approved, seedlings are supplied and the report of seedlings distributed sent to MGBM in the monthly report. Seedlings are only issued to those with properly dug holes. A partial payment for the seedlings is made to the group by MGBM. This payment is a small incentive in recognition of the work the women have put into raising the seedlings.
Group members conduct the first verification of seedling survival at 1 month and that information is sent to MGBM. This involves inspecting the trees planted and determining that they are being well taken care of.
A second verification of the same trees is conducted at 3 months and likewise that information is sent to the MGBM. If reports are acceptable to the monitors MGBM pays a small compensation for the number of trees surviving at the time of the second follow-up. It is also understood that survival of the trees is significantly increased if they survive the first 3 months.
The goals of Phase 1 of the project are to let people know the benefits of planting trees on their farms and also learn valuable skills of raising tree seedlings and planting them. Once they know this, there should be no need to continue encouraging people to do what they had now come to appreciate as critical: environmental conservation. People will now on their own impetus continue to plant trees on their farms.
Phase 2 :
In Phase 2, however, the aim was to move tree planting to public places: parks, road reserves, and other open green spaces. It would raise environmental consciousness to a new level.
This phase of the program focuses on the planting of indigenous trees on public lands to enhance the impact of environmental conservation. The same ten-step procedure is followed in this phase. To compliment this strategy, individuals and groups are encouraged to continue planting both exotic and indigenous trees on their farms. Although MGBM no longer compensates for these trees (on private spaces) the groups are encouraged to commercialize their tree nurseries for their financial gain.
The major changes to Phase 2 therefore involve the shift from private to public lands as the focus for the conservation campaign, and an increase in the monitoring and protests against the grabbing of public land, destruction of forests, poor governance, abuse of people's rights, and atrocities against women. Although some of this might be already going on in Phase 1, it is not a focal area.
The preferred tree species vary depending on the purpose as described below:
Environmental conservation Indigenous Public places Farm but sparsely
Household needs Exotics (fast growing) Farms -
Fodder Exotics (fast growing) Farms -
Medicine/Herbs Indigenous Public places Farms
Food Security Exotics & Fruit trees Farms Public places
Shade Indigenous Farms Public places
Increase Biodiversity Indigenous (to suport birds, animals & plants) Public places Farms
Protecting cultural sites Indigenous Public places -