Mrs Simone Lovera, the Executive Director of Global Forest Coalition (GFC), has asked Ghana to adopt the Community Conservation Resilience Initiative (CCRI) to protect the country’s forest reserves.
She described the CCR1- using traditional practices and cultural knowledge to preserve the forest - as the best way to respond to climate change and promote ecotourism. Mrs Lovera was addressing a two-day CCRI workshop in Ho aimed at sensitising community dwellers and stakeholders on sustainable forest use and conservation.
She said countries using the initiative with focus on bottom-up approach were achieving positive results with inter-generational knowledge transfer including “building epistemological bridges between indigenous and traditional community knowledge and mainstream knowledge.”
Mrs Lovera said all Ghana needed to do was to involve needs of the community, especially women in “biocultural approaches to biodiversity conservation and restoration.” “The community is the driver of the process, reaching the goal of emancipation…and poverty must not drive deforestation,” she said and expressed worry about the disconnection between happiness and money.
Mrs Lovera explained that forests and other natural resources played important roles in making people happy. Mr Ken Kinney, the Executive Director of the Development Institute, based in Ho, said the country was at a crossroad of conservation and development and expressed the hope that CCRI could complement the country’s Community Resource Management Areas programme.