Save the Almat Forest
The forest is located in Almat, on the way to Laqlouq. Locals there are concerned about the ecological heritage of the forest that is on a communal land. For the past three years they have been renting the land from the municipality and planting it with cedar trees and various other tree species that have been lost due to negligence, over grazing and other problems.
This year the Almat group faced difficulties to raise the money for rent. They feared that the municipality might rent the land for the shepherds if the Almat group couldn't raise the amount needed. Hence, three whole years of work would've been ruined as goats are known to eat small shrubs and thus the hard work of the group would be down lost.
That is why a fund raising lunch was organized on Sunday June 8th 2008. And to avoid future problems like the one faced this year, IndyACT is assisting the locals to develop a management plan for the site, identifying the grazing areas, organizing tree planting with AFDC, where the latter providing the cedars, as well as building the capacity of the locals through workshops and other activities.
The campaign to save Almat, in general and the fund raising lunch in particular, were a pleasant success. Many individuals donated without participating in the lunch, due to previous commitments and some had to donate small amounts of money that were, none the less, above their means. But everyone helped save the forest. To the lunch many came with their families and their coworkers. For a few hours, Bardo was invaded by a wave of nice and environmentally conscious people, each from a different background, age and social level. Prizes were distributed to each participant.
IndyAT also wants to thank Soumar Dakdouk from IndyACT and Mazen Owad, from AFDC (also a local activist from Almat), for putting so much effort and enduring so much stress to make it work. We'd also like to thank bardo for kindly hosting this lunch.
Finally, IndyACT is expecting a lot from all the participants in this event. We count on you to help us in the future to help Almat forest as we believe that the importance of this project comes from the fact that it's a local community's initiative, which not only helps preserve one patch of forest, but also raises awareness among people, helping them realize the impact of individual's work on his/her environment. IndyACT as a league of independent activists encourages such initiatives.
For more information on how to help the Almat forest please contact Soumar Dakdouk, IndyACT's Deputy Executive Director and Conservation Expert:
Mobile: 03 84 89 68