Problem Statement

In response to Article 8 of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) governments worldwide have established systems of Protected Areas (PA) to conserve biodiversity in situ, as well as to promote on-the–ground protection in adjacent areas and out across the landscape. Ghana’s allocation of 5.5% of its land surface under Protected Areas is far from the international pledge of at least 10% per country. However, the Wildlife Division (WD) of the Forestry Commission (FC), which is mandated to establish and manage a PA system in Ghana, has very little prospects for substantially expanding the PA system as a result of manpower, financial, socio-economic and political constraints, among others.

In conformity with the requirement of the national Forestry and Wildlife Policy of 1994 to actively seek the participation of all stakeholders (local communities, private sector, civil society, etc) in forest and wildlife conservation, the WD has developed the Community Resources Management Areas (CREMA) programme. Through this, local communities outside the PA system are expected to own and manage their plant and animal resources on a sustainable basis. The WD has, therefore, embarked on a programme of actively courting local communities to establish and manage their own wildlife sanctuaries. This is to assist more eligible communities reap the economic and ecological benefits of such community-run wildlife sanctuaries as the Agumatsa Wildlife sanctuary (with the Wli waterfalls and bats cave) and the Boabeneg-Fiema Monkey Sanctuary.

The Duasidan village, near Dormaa-Ahenkro in the Brong-Ahafo Region of Ghana, has responded to this drive by offering it over 120-year old sacred grove, which contains a remnant of the original dry semi-deciduous forest that contains wildlife species of international conservation importance, for conversion into a community owned managed Wildlife Sanctuary. It is particularly noted for three monkey species of conservation importance, especially the internationally endangered Olive Colobus (procolobus verus). Unlike in Boabeneg-Fiema and Agumatsa wildlife sanctuaries, the proposed Duasidan Wildlife Sanctuary is not focused on only one or two wildlife species, but on all wildlife in the remnant forest pocket.

A vital requirement for assistance programmes for local communities worldwide is that if the people themselves do not feel a need for the programme, it is doomed to failure. The Duasidan community, through its chief, has amply demonstrated their felt need by persistently approaching the Wildlife Division from as far back as November, 2001 for assistance to mange their sacred grove. Initially, the community had anticipated duplicating the eco-tourism focused approach of Boabeng-Fiema and Agumatsa Wildlife Sanctuaries. Preliminary assessment of the site indicated that there was additional potential for school-based conservation education as well as community development through sustainable natural resource management. To further demonstrate their readiness to manage the grove, the community has pledged an additional 12ha of land to the current 2ha remnant forest.

Despite their good intentions, the Wildlife Division has not been able to offer much assistance beyond technical assistance, and the people are gradually losing enthusiasm and are growing increasingly frustrated with their chief and Wildlife Division staff. In the face of increasing impoverishment as a result of growing rural-urban migration of the youth, drying river bodies, dwindling yield from agricultural produce, invasion of the Guinea grassland savannah, and lack of marketing avenues. Out of desperation, and in an effort to attain the barest level of subsistence from their farming activities, the community has resorted to more intense agriculture practices, such as vegetable farming along the major streams in the area, as well as intensified fuel, wood, harvesting, resulting in worsening environmental degradation.

1.2 Project Objectives

The main goal of the proposed project is to assist the Duasidan community to promote biodiversity conservation and sustainable utilization of its resources for the socio-economic wellbeing of the people.

Using the sacred grove as the entry point, the project seeks to achieve the following objectives:

a) To rehabilitate the degraded 20ha sacred grove into a community wildlife sanctuary through sustainable landuse practices, conservation education and eco-tourism promotion.

b) To establish Community Resource Management Areas (CREMA) programme in the Duasidan community.

c) To promote self-sustaining livelihood support ventures.

1.3 Project Rationale

The primary importance of the project is to halt and reverse the current trend of landuse practices that result in land degradation and the depletion of biodiversity. Its successful implementation is expected to promote diversity conservation, equip the community with sustainable livelihood skills, and help alleviate poverty, as a contribution to local, district and national development. These objectives reflect the aims of the national Poverty Alleviation Strategy, Community Resource Management Area concept of the Wildlife Division, the biodiversity focal area of operation GEF, and the World Convention on Biological Diversity.

The Dormaa District Assembly has pledged its support for the development of the Duasidan area and its proposed wildlife sanctuary. Within its limited capacity, it has been focusing attention on the community by regularly maintaining the road through the village, constructed a bore hole, etc. A project of this nature would facilitate an increase in the allocation of development projects from the district assembly and other institutions / agencies.

The Wildlife Division considers the initiative as an important component of its CREMA programme, and has been providing some technical support, as well as actively seeking financial assistance for present and future development.

1.1. Intended Results

The project hopes to achieve:

1. Conversion of the presently degraded 20ha sacred grove into a fully protected and managed Community Wildlife Sanctuary, with a floral and faunal diversity approaching the original composition.
2. Development of the Wildlife Sanctuary and other local assets into a community-run eco-tourism and conservation education package with a +500 visitation per annum.
3. Operation of environmentally-friendly livelihood support ventures for at least 30 beneficiaries per annum, sustained by a locally administered revolving fund.
4. Establishment of the CREMA programme up to, at least, the Constitution and bye-law stage.
5. At least 30% of the Duasidan community sensitized and actively practicing environmentally-sound landuse activities.


Specific Result 1: Community sensitized and actively participating environmentally-sound landuse practices

Planned Activities:
a) Establish Project Management Team (PMT).
b) Conduct community sensitisation campaigns through workshops and durbars, and radio programmes, using Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) strategies, for the planning, implementation and evaluation phases of the project.
c) Create project signage at appropriate sites within and outside the Duasidan community.
d) Undertake project monitoring and evaluation at specified periods, using a collectively agreed set of indicators. This will include biodiversity survey in Wildlife Sanctuary and in farmlands, and a standard-of-living (socio-economic status) survey at the beginning and end of project to assess project impact, captured in Outcome 2 and 5 below.

Specific Results 2: Sacred grove developed into a community wildlife sanctuary

a) Conduct awareness campaign to sensitise communities on the conservation and economic potential of the sacred grove, the impact of their daily activities on the grove and its environs.
b) Select, train and equip a Sanctuary Management Committee (SMC) to protect and manage the proposed Wildlife Sanctuary.
c) Conduct boundary survey and demarcation, together with the SMC, and process for gazettment.
d) Conduct faunal and floral inventories in the sanctuary.
e) Develop a Sanctuary Management Plan to be implemented by the SMC, with technical support from the Wildlife Division.
f) Establish tree nursery with indigenous and useful exotic agricultural species for tree planting activities, and for possible commercial purposes.
g) Carry out enrichment planting of the sanctuary with indigenous tree species and selected exotic fruit trees; demarcate external boundaries with suitable tree species.
h) Plant indigenous trees 30m on either bank of Asubonteng stream, 1km upstream and downstream from the Wildlife Sanctuary.
i) Conduct end-of-project biodiversity survey to assess project impact.

Specific Results 3: Wildlife Sanctuary and other attractions developed into a conservation education and eco-tourism package.

a) Conduct study on tourism potential within and outside the Duasidan area.
b) Establish and train a Community Tourism Committee (CTC) to develop and run eco-tourism package centred on the Wildlife Sanctuary.
c) Create a tourist trail network, connected to information points in the sanctuary.
d) Create directional and information points at appropriate locations along trails and important trees, with appropriate signage.
e) Develop an information sheet/brochure, highlighting inventory findings and trail network layout.
f) Construct and operate an interactive Visitor Educational Centre (VEC) for tourists, and for pupils/students from first and second cycle educational institutions.
g) Establish functional links with educational institutions within and outside the Dormaa District to use the sanctuary and the CEC as a live biological laboratory.

Specific Results 4: Self-sustaining Livelihood Support ventures established.

a) Conduct study to identify viable environmentally friendly livelihood support ventures (e.g., livestock rearing, beekeeping, snail-rearing).
b) Train 30, gender-balanced, pilot participants per venture (10 and 20 in first and second project year, respectively).
c) Establish a community-managed revolving fund to provide soft-loans for sustainable livelihood support ventures.

Specific outcome 5: Community Resource Management Areas (CREMA) programme established up to, at least constitution level, in Duasidan community.

a) Conduct feasibility studies into resource base, land and resource tenure, and local organisational structures.
b) Hold a series of consultative meetings with relevant stakeholder groups to deliberate on the strategies to achieve the CREMA objectives, using Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) strategies.
c) Establish CREMA administrative structures (e.g. CREMA Executive Committee (CEC) and Community Resource Management Committees (CRMC))
d) Send a team of CEC and other selected community members on a study tour of a successful CREMA pilot area (e. g. Amokwawsuazo at Ankasa Conservation Area, or Adjoafua at Bia Conservation Area).
e) Establish CREMA boundaries through consultative process.
f) Use participatory processes to draft CREMA Constitution.
g) Develop and legitimise CREMA bye-laws through the District assembly.
h) Collectively select 10 volunteer pilot locations for demonstration of possible viable combinations of landuse that will promote sustainable forest and wildlife resource production.
i) Promote integration of agroforestry practices into existing and new farms.
j) Conduct socio-economic surveys to assess standard-of-living at end of project.
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Project Snapshot

Area Of Work:
Grant Amount:
US$ 22,200.00
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 9,600.00
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 22,600.00
Project Number:
Satisfactorily Completed
Project Characteristics and Results
Capacity - Building Component
A community tourism committee will formed and trained to promote ecotourism as abusiness in the project area. In addition the proejct will select, train and equip a Sanctuary Management Committee (SMC) to protect and manage the proposed Wildlife Sanctuary
Gender Focus
About 30, gender-balanced, pilot participants will be involved in training as home seaters and supported with alternative livelihood activities.
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SGP Country office contact

Dr. George Buabin Ortsin
Ms. Lois Sarpong
+233 505740909


UNDP, Global Environment Facility Small Grants Programme P.O. Box 1423
Accra, Greater Accra, 233-302
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