Community Tree Planting returns to its Tanzanian roots

The project went from 77 farmers to over 77,000– with more joining every week.

Community Tree Planting returns to its Tanzanian roots

If you're in a rush, here's what you need to know this month:

🌳 The project has planted over 22 million trees!

👨🏿‍🌾 The project has over 17,000 small groups of farmers taking care of their own land.

🇹🇿  The project is expanding in Tanzania, and has built a digital sign-up tool to register new farmers there again!

This is the latest update from our Community Tree Planting project. For more updates like this one, follow Wren on Twitter and Instagram.

Despite the pandemic, it's been a time of rapid growth for our Community Tree Planting project. They now have over 100,000 farmers working together in small groups, planting almost one million trees every month.

Returning to its roots: expansion in Tanzania

Over 20 years ago, the program began in Tanzania, with 77 farmers in one room who chose to take action that would improve their farms, communities, and even the global climate. Now, after a few years of relative inactivity, project leads have returned to Tanzania to recruit more farmers to our cause– and they have a new digital tool to help them do it.

The project recently launched a small group registration tool, that project leads can use to quickly sign up new farmers. Since over half of Tanzanian's have access to the internet via their mobile phones, this digital onboarding should increase the number of Tanzanian farmers joining the project considerably.

The mild climate of East Africa makes it easy to have cluster meetings outside.

Messaging Apps are crucial infrastructure for our projects' farmers

During the pandemic, mobile phones became crucial pieces of infrastructure for our project. Prior to the pandemic, farmers mostly shared information informally, face to face at small group meetings. But now, the pandemic restrictions make it harder for groups to get into regular contact.

This hasn't stopped farmers from learning from each other though– they're just using a different medium: WhatsApp!

Most small groups have their own group chats. In addition to wishing each other "good morning", they also teach each other about local flora and conservation farming techniques.

COVID-19 picks up in Tanzania

Unfortunately, Tanzania has experienced a surge of COVID-19 cases recently. While they have a vaccination program, it lags far behind richer Western countries. The farmers on this project are doing the best they can, but they'll still be under severe restrictions for a long time yet.

In this context, your support is more valuable than ever. 🧡

- Thomas and the Wren team