By Annonciata BYUKUSENGE
Women, from 51 countries who participated in 8th Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (#8ARFSD2022) in Rwanda, have planted trees in order to showcase abilities of women at the frontline of climate change programme.
Women at the frontline of climate change program is a program that encourages women to participate in environmental conservation, biodiversity and climate change in order to empower considering that educating a woman meaning educating a nation.
During the conference that took place from March 1 to March 5 2022, they urged women in general to take part in the implementation of climate change project dubbed “GUARD-Africa” (Galvanising and Unifying Africa’s Action for Resilient Development in the era of the pandemic” that was officially launched in Kigali on March 3, 2022.
They said that this is one of the lasting solutions that will help Africa cope with climate change.
The women’s call comes at the right time as Rwanda joins the World to celebrate International Women’s Day under the theme ‘Gender Equality in addressing Climate change.”
“GUARD-Africa”- the three -year project is meant to scale up climate action and build climate resilience of vulnerable communities in 12 countries.
Madam Wangari Maathai is one of the women who participated in regional conference and planted trees on the sideline event.
“As women, we need to work together and work with our countries to implement environmental protection measures and tackle climate change because they are the ones that will have the most impact and satisfaction,” she said.
The project will cover climate resilience activities in Rwanda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Niger, Cameroon, Zambia, Botswana, Morocco, Nigeria, Ivory Coast and Gabon. In Rwanda, the Rwanda Climate change and Development Network will be participate in this project.
Implemented by PACJA and funded by the Swedish government through the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) at a tune of 50Million Swedish Krona ($5.1million), the project is designed to mobilise, consolidate and unify efforts of civil society, other non-State Actors (NSAs), and governments, recognizing that mainstreaming more inclusive practices now, will be influential for decades to come.
Officials said that the selected countries in Guard-Africa Initiative were chosen on basis of regional blocks influence and through their lobbying power (like in Rwanda).
The initiative is expected to l catalyze conversations towards acceleration of implementation of the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and overall climate action.
“This project resonates for Rwanda which is the first country in Africa to submit the NDCs and also a home to the SDG- Africa Secretariat in Kigali but also has an active government -civil society organisations (CSOs) collaboration towards climate action, “said Ayele Kabede Gebreyes, the Program Manager Regional Development Cooperation Africa- at the Swedish embassy in Kigali.