CSO’s DEVELOP COMMUNICATION STRATEGY FOR GHANA’S FLEGT VPA

CSO’s DEVELOP COMMUNICATION STRATEGY FOR GHANA’S FLEGT VPA EcoCare Ghana organized a communication working group meeting to discuss the communication strategy to be adopted by civil society when communicating Ghana’s FLEGT VPA. EcoCare launched the ATUMPAN project which seeks to effectively communicate the FLEGT VPA process, milestone and outcomes towards EU market actors and other stakeholders in preparation towards FLEFT license issuance.As part of the ATUMPAN project, a communication working group must be convened to discuss the communication strategy civil society will use in communicating Ghana’s FLEGT VPA process.A few selected civil society representatives participated in the meeting to discuss the agenda for the meeting. The meeting commenced around 9:30am prompt with a prayer and round the table self-introduction of participants.Mr. Samuel Mawutor started the meeting with an opening remarks and set the context for the meeting. He gave a brief presentation of the FLEGT-VPA process, how and where it started and where it is currently. He also stated that FLEGT was in its late stages for the license to be issued.Rossa from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations(FAO) which is the funding partner for the ATUMPAN project gave a short presentation at the meeting. She encouraged…

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ECOCARE AND PARTNERS MONITORS VISIT

ECOCARE AND PARTNERS MONITORS VISIT Ecocare Ghana team accompanied by the country Director for Rainforest Alliance/UTZ Mr. Kwame Osei visited some communities in the project areas (Adwumam, Nkwanta, Abrokofe, Seniegyakrom in the Western North region Juaboso district and Akantanso, Chirayaaso, Bofaaso in the Ashanti region Atwima mponua district). Rainforest Alliance/UTZ is the funding partner for the MoCCPA project. The purpose of the visit was to access the work done so far by the EcoCare Ghana on the MoCCPA project and how far the Cocoa and Forest Initiative implementation process is unfolding in the project communities. In each community visited, the community members gathered for discussions, Patience from EcoCare starts the conversations by asking the community members available about what they remember about the Cocoa and Forest Initiative and some of the commitments that were in the frame work of action. Community members were asked to share some implementations (or work) from the Cocoa and Forest Initiative which has been done so far after the MoCCPA project was initiated. AKANTANSO community spoke of some companies like OLAM, CARGILL, AGROECOM (LBC’s) coming to map their various farms, CODAPEC provided fertilizers for the farmers, tree seedlings offered to farmers to plant on their…

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3RD DISTRICT LEVEL STAKEHOLDERS MEETING FOR THE MoCCPA PROJECT

3RD DISTRICT LEVEL STAKEHOLDERS MEETING FOR THE MoCCPA PROJECT EcoCare Ghana team together with Henrietta from Rainforest Alliance/UTZ visited the MoCCPA project districts and communities to access how the MoCCPA project is going and what community members are doing to support the CFI and lastly how community monitors are monitoring the CFI commitments in their individual communities. The visits were followed up with a district level stakeholder’s engagement at JUABOSO and ATWEMA MPONUA districts. These districts are part of the Hot Spot Intervention Areas in Ghana where is mostly grown and is a great contributing factor to deforestation in Ghana. There are seven communities in each district where the MoCCPA project is been implemented by EcoCare Ghana. Each community was visited and a brief discussion went on about the CFI and how community monitors are working. In all, fourteen communities were visited and each community shared their observation, experience and expectation about the CFI. EcoCare team together with Henrietta from RA/UTZ took turns to further educate community members present about the CFI, the need to protect the forest reserve, effects of deforestation etc. community monitors were also asked about the monitoring work. They shared their experience, observations and challenges with…

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ECOCARE GHANA LAUNCHES ATUMPAN PROJECT TO COMMUNICATE FLEGT

Ecocare Ghana Launches Atumpan Project to Communicate FLEGT EcoCare Ghana on Thursday 17th October launched the Atumpan projet (communicating FLEGT) at the Forestry Commission Auditorium. The purpose of the project is to effectively communicate Ghana’s FLEGT-VPA processes, milestones and outcomes towards EU market actors and other stakeholder, in preparation towards FLEGT licensing. The project is being funded by FAO-EU-FLEGT PROGRAMME (Food and Agricultural Organisation-European Union- Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade). The project is expected to last 12 months. The launch brought together stakeholders from government (FORESTRY COMMISSION), private sector (Timber Industry), civil society organizations and the media.   As Ghana gets closer to issuing Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) licenses, it has been established that there is the need for strong and clear precursory information to the trade destinations, particularly the European Union, to be aware of the products that will be delivered and the national overarching system behind the issuance of FLEGT licenses. The Atumpan project therefore addresses the need for effective information sharing on Ghana’s Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade – Voluntary Partnership Agreements (FLEGT-VPA), which is a priority area for Ghana as the country gets closer to issuing FLEGT licenses. The FAO-EU FLEGT…

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District Level Stakeholder Meeting at Juaboso and Atwima Mponua for MoCCPA Project

District Level Stakeholder Meeting at Juaboso and Atwima Mponua for MoCCPA Project EcoCare Ghana held a district level stakeholder meeting for stakeholders in juaboso and Atwima Nponua district to discuss the Monitoring cocoa and forest initiative commitments through participatory approach (MoCCPA) project.The juaboso meeting was held in the district hospital conference room and the Atwima Nponua meeting was held in the district assembly hall. The meeting was attended by members of forestry commission, cocobod, farmers, chiefs, opinion leaders, licensed buying companies, media just to mention a few.The meeting was organized to build capacity, educate participants and discuss the MoCCPA project and to find out how all relevant stakeholders can contribute to its success in selected districts. Prior to the meeting, a visit was made by EcoCare team to selected farming communities within the juaboso and Atwima Nponua district to inform the community about MoCCPA project and invite two (2) members from each community to participate in the meeting.The lead campaigner for EcoCare Ghana Mr Obed Addai in his presentation in both meetings took participants through the history and inception of cocoa and forest initiative (CFI) and how it lead to the creation of the MoCCPA project. He explained to participants…

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Observation Made During the Field Visit for CFI

Observation Made During the Field Visit for CFI Cocoa is the backbone of Ghana’s economy for a very long time. Cocoa contributes significantly to Ghana’s gross domestic product (GDP) and also a source of livelihood for cocoa farmers. Cocoa is also a driving force of deforestation. The Ghana National REDD+ Strategy identifies agricultural expansion to be responsible for fifty percent (50%) of deforestation, with cocoa as a major contributor.The World Cocoa Foundation and the Sustainable Trade Initiative in collaboration with the Internation­al Sustainability Unit of the Office of the Prince of Wales have partnered with governments of Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire and private cocoa companies to initiate the Cocoa and Forests Initiative (CFI). The CFI aims at providing the enabling environment for the cocoa sector players to positively contribute to the preservation of forests in Ghana and the coun­try’s economy.EcoCare Ghana took it upon itself to monitor the CFI commitments made by government and private cocoa companies in landscape levels using participatory approach. This lead to the creation of the MoCCPA project. The monitoring is taking place in two (2) out of the seven (7) Hot Spot Intervention Areas (HIA) in Ghana namely, Juaboso and Atwima Nponua respectively. EcoCare Ghana…

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Ecocare Ghana Trains Twenty-eight (28) Community Monitors

Ecocare Ghana Trains 28 Community Monitors One major stakeholder that can contribute immensely to monitoring activities at the landscape level are the members of the community. As part of forest and community governance, it is the community members themselves who serve as the grass-root stakeholders who benefit or suffer from policies, commitments, national and international action plans etc.Over the past year’s community members have been left out of monitoring, policy formulation and governance of the forest due to low capacity and knowledge in forest governance. However, they can be very effective if their capacity is built in forest policies and governance through training and technological knowhow to aid them in detecting forest illegalities and monitoring policies at the landscape level.EcoCare Ghana through their MoCCPA project seeks to monitor the commitments made by government and the private companies in cocoa and forest initiative (CFI). Government and the private companies made about 8 core commitments under the CFI and in order to properly and effectively monitor the commitments, EcoCare Ghana picked 2 community monitors each from 14 project communities from 2 districts namely Atwema Mponua and Juaboso districts.The community monitors chosen were housed and trained on how to use a mobile device…

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Media Training for Journalist on Cocoa and Forest Initiative (CFI)

Media Training for Journalist on Cocoa and Forest Initiative (CFI) EcoCare Ghana has organized a training program for a cross section of media persons in Accra. The training program was held at Erata Hotel on Thursday 18th July 2019. The training program was organized to inform and build the capacity of Media persons to take active part in the monitoring process of the cocoa and forest initiative because the media is a key stakeholder in the monitoring and implementation process.As part of EcoCare Ghana’s project, which is monitoring the cocoa and forest initiative commitments through participatory approaches (MoCCPA project), it was essential for the media to be trained and their capacity built in order for them to take active part in the implementation and monitoring process. The project which is financed by Rainforest Alliance/UTZ through their sector partnership (SP) program.The program was attended by a cross section of journalist from all media circles like Print, Radio, TV Stations, Online Media and Freelancers.The resource persons for the meeting were Mr Vincent Awotwe-Pratt who is the programs manager on Cocoa and Forest Initiative at the World Cocoa Foundation (WCF), Mrs Glowen Kyei Mensah who is also the programs manager on the Cocoa…

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Civil Society Organisations Match to Present Petition to Stop the Mining of Atewa

Civil Society Organisations Match To Present Petition To Stop The Mining Of Atewa A group of civil society organizations marched in Accra to protest and present a petition to parliament against the mining of bauxite in the Atewa Forest reserve. The civil society organizations together with some celebrities and members of the general public, took to the streets of Accra to peacefully protest in a match to voice out their displeasure about government’s intention to mine bauxite in the Atewa Forest reserve for commercial purposes. The coalition says mining of bauxite in commercial quantities could have harmful consequences on the forest reserve and the communities surrounding the reserve. According to the group, the Atewa forest reserve serves as home to some endangered wildlife species, tree species, medicinal plants and also as a source for very important rivers across the country.The communications person for the coalition, Mr Obed Addai from EcoCare Ghana, addressed the protesters before they started the match. He advised participants about the reason for the match, which rout they are using, no use of violent and strong words, no littering and stated emphatically that it is a peaceful match to exhibit a displeasure about government’s decision to mine…

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Monitoring the Cocoa and Forest Initiative Commitments Through Participatory Approach Project (MoCCPA)

Monitoring The Cocoa And Forest Initiative Commitments Through Participatory Approach Project (MoCCPA) On the 21st of February 2019, EcoCare Ghana launched its Monitoring of the Cocoa and forest initiative Commitments through Participatory Approaches (MoCCPA) project at Erata Hotel in Accra.The cocoa and forest initiative came about when governments of Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire together with over twenty-seven (27) cocoa and chocolate companies committed to work together to end deforestation and promote forest protection and restoration in the cocoa supply chain. To achieve this hefty ambition, the Cocoa and Forest Initiative (CFI) was initiated under the patronage of HRH the Prince of Whales in 2017. The CFI process has become the main medium through which private-sector and government are collaborating to achieve the commitments in the Joint Framework of Action, and is facilitated by Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) and World Cocoa Foundation (WCF). This project is therefore aimed at supporting the CFI process in Ghana through two (2) main approaches – 1) Mobilizing civil society and farming communities to actively participate in CFI implementation at national and landscape level; and 2) Working with other partners to monitor implementation of CFI commitments both at national and landscape level.The inception meeting was utilizeed to:…

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