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Friday, July 19, 2024
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FAO PBF funded project trains 40 people on innovative beekeeping

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An innovative four-day training session in Pakali Ba, Lower River Region (LRR), has equipped 40 participants from 10 Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and Peace Building Fund (PBF) beneficiary communities with vital skills in beehive-making.

This training, by FAO funded by the  PBF, sought to transform the lives of borderline community members by providing them with sustainable livelihood skills and reducing detrimental impacts and woodlands and  forests.

Modou Colley, the PBF national focal person, highlighted the broader objectives of the training. “This initiative is designed to empower our communities with skills that not only offer alternative sources of income but also protect our valuable forests,” he explained. Over four days, participants successfully crafted ten hives, which they will replicate in their respective communities, fostering skill-sharing and local economic growth.

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Before the advent of these hives, beekeepers faced significant challenges. Traditional honey harvesting methods often involved setting fires in the bush to smoke out bees, a practice that may  lead to destructive bushfires. These fires not only threatened the forest ecosystems but also posed risks to the communities themselves.

Siaka Manga, a resource person at the training, emphasized the durability and effectiveness of the new hives. “These hives are designed to be robust and efficient at trapping bees, eliminating the need for harmful fire-based methods,” he explained. This advancement is expected to drastically reduce the incidence of bushfires, thereby safeguarding the forest and its biodiversity.

For the participants, the training was a great learning experience and a lifeline. Fatou Jallow, a participant from Kombo Darsilameh, expressed her gratitude for the new skills. “This training empowers us to contribute to sustainable agriculture, enhance biodiversity, and create a source of income,” she said. “We are now equipped to produce high-quality honey while supporting environmental conservation.”

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Baba Sallah from Missera in Foni echoed these sentiments, noting the profound impact of the training on their livelihoods. “With these new skills, we can take up honey production as a profession,” he remarked. “The new hives mean we no longer need to light fires in the bush, which will help minimize bushfires and protect our communities and forests.”

The successful creation of the hives during the training session is just the beginning. Armed with the tools and knowledge provided by the project, participants are set to replicate these techniques in their home communities, ensuring a ripple effect of positive change. This training marks a significant step towards sustainable development, forest conservation, and economic empowerment for borderline communities.

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