Of Forests and Friends – A Visionary Conservation and Community Project

Mar 21, 2017 Conservation
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Given Rwanda’s intense agricultural model, the country has a limited number of indigenous trees outside its national parks, so our reforestation project is vital.

Today, 21 March, is International Day of Forests. This day is particularly relevant in raising awareness of our reforestation efforts at Bisate Lodge in Rwanda. In a period of 12 months, 12,591 trees were planted with many more being planted as we write this…

International Day of Forests is a day set aside each year to celebrate and raise awareness of the importance of all types of forests. Forests cover one third of the Earth’s mass and are some of the most biologically diverse ecosystems on land.

Beside this, and the many other benefits that our forests provide, global deforestation continues to take place at an alarming rate…

The good news is that our reforestation project at Bisate is offering a model that can be replicated not only in other parts of Rwanda but hopefully across countries and continents!

The first phase of the project is focused on the indigenous reforestation of our core 27-hectare site in partnership with the Tuzamurane Cooperative. Five members of the community are employed to run this with the aim of planting another 10,000 trees in the coming months.

Trees planted so far:

  • 1019 Hagenia
  • 1214 Dombeya
  • 383 Neoboutonia
  • 2644 Alnus
  • 5539 Bamboo
  • 157 Lobelia
  • 1640 Eucalyptus

We are already seeing a number of birds, butterflies and mammals recolonising this reforested land. This means that our guests can also enjoy sightseeing from the comfort of their villas!

All guests at Bisate Lodge will also have the opportunity to be part of this visionary conservation and community project during their stay. Everyone is encouraged to plant a tree and thus contribute directly to the reforestation of the area. In this way, every guest becomes a conservationist.

Find out more about Bisate, opening in June 2017!

 Photographs courtesy of Chris Roche and Ingrid and Rob Baas

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By Kate Collins

Kate grew up exploring the bushveld on her family rose farm, living among Nguni cattle, geese, warthogs, ostriches and horses. After completing an Honours degree at the University of Cape Town, Kate began working at Wild magazine as a journalist and as the Digital Editor of the Wild Card website. Kate has travelled to destinations throughout southern Africa, enjoying the many rich offerings of our country. Her work at Wild magazine helped secure her next move to Londolozi Game Reserve where she worked in their Creative team managing online communications and assisting guests with their wildlife photography. Kate now lives in Johannesburg and is proud to be a part of Wilderness Safaris in her role as copywriter. “I am very excited to work for a company that makes such a huge difference to people’s lives and to the wild places throughout our incredibly beautiful and diverse continent.”

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