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International Partnerships

Protecting wildlife and indigenous peoples’ livelihoods in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

I have a duty to protect the forest, as it feeds me and my family.

Thomas Aseli

One of the Sustainable Wildlife Management Programme’s objectives in the reserve is to update the hunting rules, in a participatory manner with indigenous peoples and rural communities. Currently, hunting is allowed in some areas of the reserve. However, some of the regulations for the use of natural resources, especially those concerning wildlife, are outdated. Moreover, despite a ban on external hunters, they still manage to access these areas. The Sustainable Wildlife Management Programme is collaborating with the reserve’s managers to apply and enforce these new rules.

To further decrease pressures on hunting and to provide a healthy, sustainable alternative to wild meat, this programme and rural communities are working together to develop environmentally-friendly agriculture and small-scale chicken and palm larvae farms as alternative sources of protein and income.

"My wish is to leave the forest untouched for future generations so that they may also find the animals that I find now,’’ Thomas concluded.

About the programme

The Sustainable Wildlife Management Programme is an initiative of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States, funded by the European Union and co-financed by the French Facility for Global Environment and the French Development Agency. It is implemented by a consortium of partners which includes the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the French Agricultural Research Centre for International Development, the Center for International Forestry Research and the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the activities are being coordinated by WCS, in collaboration with the Congolese Institute for the Conservation of Nature.


Original text by: FAO