Improving livelihoods, saving forests in Zambia

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Imiti  Ikula  Empanga  Environment  and Development  Organisation  (IIEEDO) is established as a catalytic facilitator and guiding light, for targeted rural families and communities to acquire the required self-development, motivation and know – how for self-reliant income generation, food security and boosting of livelihood. It has branches in Mpika, Chinsali, Isoka and Nakonde.

IIEEDO Vision

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The Vision is of “stimulating individuals and communities to actively and continuously conserve the environment, better their livelihood, and thereby promoting socio-economic development in support of poverty reduction strategies.” To this end, IIEEDO mission is “to provide community based sustainable development and management of natural resources, through the spirit of volunteerism and self-improvement.”

Organization and Origins

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IIEEDO is a community-based response to environment degradation and socio-economic insecurity. It has been reconstituted in 2007, as an outgrowth of Mayo Mpapa organisation founded in 1992.This initiative is inspired, initiated and guided by Chilufya Kapwepwe. She has served as a Legislator and diplomat, after working in the health services delivery system of the local government and corporate sector. She also served as an Executive Secretary of the Zambian Nurses Association. Her background reinforces IIEEDO’s response to rural community powerlessness and poverty and consequent environment unfriendly means of scraping for livelihoods.

The IIEEDO precursor organization, Mayo Mpapa, acquired fifteen years working experiences with small scale farmers in the cultivation and marketing of groundnuts, maize, millet and sorghum. For the last year, IIEEDO has been initiating activities that promote conservation consciousness and good environment husbandry by prospecting for commercial crop growing and trading as an alternative to earning income from environmentally damaging burning and trading in charcoal.

IIEEDO has already ventured to initiate income generation by sourcing markets for small scale farmers, household food security through food crop growing and natural resources conservation through disincentive against charcoal business. Results of these interventions are to uplift livelihoods and begin to reverse the trend of wanton deforestation, through opening of linkages to markets. This is accomplished through communities, not by promising hand outs, but is ready to provide any technical guidance to entrepreneurial production and marketing.