Africa Travel Week

Combining Today’s Technology With Ancient Indigenous Knowledge

According to WWF, nearly 50% of the earth’s terrestrial biodiversity is found in areas under the stewardship of Indigenous peoples, an area that is approximately 21% of the total land area of our planet. Across Tanzania, many forested areas are home to some of the country’s most marginalised people. For example, the Hadza, Datooga and Masaai communities’ environment is subject to exploitation by migrant farmers and practices that are not allowed under their land use plans.

Significant biodiversity is protected within these community managed lands, outside of formally protected areas. While some communities wish to protect their land, they don’t always have the finance and resources to do so. In Tanzania local forest communities are partnering with Carbon Tanzania to generate forest-based carbon credits that enable Tanzanian natural resource owners, to earn revenues from the protection of nature. These carbon credits allow businesses in other parts of the world to invest in a nature-based solution that serves the climate, indigenous communities, and wildlife.

The Hadza have been tracking wildlife and monitoring their environment for thousands of years building a knowledge base unmatched by modern technology. Plan Vivo, the certifying standard issuing credits for the Yaeda-Eyasi Landscapes project, require proof that the project is protecting the environment while mitigating climate change and supporting local communities. Anecdotes about improvements in forest health and an increase in wildlife sightings is not enough.

Cluey is being used to draw upon the exceptional, ancient knowledge of the Hadza to monitor the forest and the wildlife in a form of evidence that is accessible to validators and scientists in other parts of the world. The app records data from the monitoring of wildlife and records land incursions helping to settle disputes, strengthen governance and eventually reduce the number of conflicts that occur. Users of the app both in Tanzania and in other parts of the world can view time scales, records of wildlife sightings, evidence of illegal activity, land incursions or conflicts in addition to minutes of community meetings.

“Through Cluey we hope to proceed well since the system has been set with the various information that needs to be gathered from the Yaeda-Eyasi Landscape project. This data brings awareness to other experts who are seeking information from our field operations” says Isack Bryson: Project Manager, Yaeda-Eysai Landscape.

Isack continues “The Yaeda-Eyasi Project area consists of indigenous communities who have not even attended primary school. Using this technology involves special training with the community members on how to use the app and implement this method. We are currently training all of our Village Game Scouts (VGS) on the theory as well as providing practical training. This app has been very useful for the VGS. We have had our traditional ways for gathering data orally from individuals from different camps. The hunter-gatherers living within the project area are very familiar with the landscape and often gather the information we need to secure the forest. The VGS work with these individual to record the information that the Hadza instinctively gather as they continue with their day-to-day lives.”

For more info on Tanzanian travel, visit UJUMBE Magazine.

Africa Travel Week

Africa Travel Week (ATW) focuses on inbound and outbound markets for general leisure tourism, luxury travel, LGBTQ+ travel and the MICE/business travel sector as well as travel technology. Shows include: ILTM Africa, WTM Africa, EQUAL Africa, ibtm AFRICA, Travel Forward, Sports & Events Tourism Exchange and African Tourism Investment Summit.