Farmers Plant Thousands of Trees to Regrow Forest in Malang

Farmers of the Forest Farmers Group (Kelompok Tani Hutan/KTH),Tambakrejo village, Sumbermanjing Wetan, Malang regency, East Java has been coming to the community nursery (Kebun Bibit Rakyat/KBR) to pick up tree seedlings. Approximately 200,000 seedlings of soursop,avocado, and sengon have been prepared by KTH Maju Mapan to be distributed to local farmers for free.

The seedlings was donated by the Office of River Basin and Forest Management (Balai Pengelolaan Daerah Aliran Sungai dan Hutan Lindung/BPDASHL) Brantas Sampean, and are going to be planted in damaged lands that were used to be forest areas.

"Through the Social Forestry program we hope that communities could contribute to forest conservation, and in the long run could improve the general wellbeing of the people," stated Mochammad Firman, the head of KTH Maju Mapan.

Watch a video on this program at: Hutan Kita (Our Forest)

The select plant varieties are mostly fruit trees, so that farmers could harvest the fruits without cutting down the trees. This way, the forest's ecological function could be maintained while serving an economic value.

"As for the Sengon trees, they are intended to be a short-term crop that farmers can harvest in a few years. But our main target for the long run are the fruit trees," added Firman.

KTH Maju Mapan is partnering with PROFAUNA Indonesia for its Lowland Forest Conservation Program in South Malang. Both share a mutual concern, which is restoring the degraded forest.

"Before 1998, forests in South Malang was dense and inhabited by various wildlife species. Since then, this area has been severely degrading. PROFAUNA aspired to restore the forest, and among the measures taken is collaborating with forest farmers through the Social Forestry scheme," claimed erik Yanuar, PROFAUNA Indonesia's campaign officer.


© 2003 - ProFauna Indonesia

ProFauna Indonesia is an Indonesian society for the protection of
wild animals and their habitats