Integrated Action on Biodiversity
INTERACT-Bio, led by ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability, is designed to improve the utilization and management of nature within fast-growing cities and the regions surrounding them. It aims to provide expanding urban communities in the Global South with nature-based solutions and associated long-term benefits.
The project enables governments at all levels – from local to national – to integrate their efforts for mainstreaming biodiversity and ecosystem services into core subnational government functions such as spatial planning, land-use management, local economic development and infrastructure design.
Nature provides many diverse life-supporting and life-enhancing contributions to people in cities and their surrounding regions. In cities of the future, nature should ideally be fully integrated into all aspects of urban life to provide a range of interconnected benefits.
The project supports cities/regions to understand and unlock, within their specific local context, the potential of nature to provide essential services and new or enhanced economic opportunities, while simultaneously protecting and enhancing the biodiversity and ecosystems on which these services and opportunities depend. In doing so, these actions will place the participating cities/regions on a more resilient and sustainable development path.
Tanzanian cities are some of the fastest urbanizing cities in Africa and around the world with the rates of urbanization consistently outpacing the development plans, resulting in extensive land grabs that push, decrease, and destroy natural spaces to the point whereby original ecosystem services are no longer operating optimally or at all.
To re-establish the connection between nature and nature’s benefits in cities for the everyday Tanzanian, this unique and innovative outreach program intends to harness a combination of the
aesthetic appeal of nature and natural spaces with targeted well-designed mass awareness raising through establishing the innovative Bio-Hubs which attract and foster increased biodiversity that people can see the dual aesthetic and beneficial nature of nature in cities. This initiative is the partnership between ICLEI, BORDA-Tanzania, and Nipe Fagio. As part of ICLEI’s INTERACT-Bio project, BORDA-Tanzania and Nipe Fagio developed an outreach program to create awareness of the benefits of nature in Dodoma, Arusha and Moshi.
A Nature Hub
In Dodoma, a Nature Hub was built at Nyerere Square in October 2019 in partnership with the Dodoma City Council. Up to this day, the Nature Hub is well-preserved and continues to highlight the benefits of nature in cities.
The Regenerative Food Project
In 2021, the Regenerative Food Project, a partnership among the same organizations is being implemented at the Msalato Community Farm, to start demonstrating the vision of a Dodoma ‘foodway’, anchored by a permanent infrastructure of perennial plants and trees. Nipe Fagio has conducted community bazaar and house-to-house engagement to discover potential motivations for involvement in the project, communicated the importance of the project to the community, and the critical need for forming a farmers’ association to lead the project.
Tree Planting Program
In Moshi, 250 native trees were planted at Kimochi Secondary School located in Sango Village within Moshi Rural Municipality. A total of 250 people, 150 kids and 100 adults took part in the planting event. In partnership with the Kilimanjaro Project, the tracking system was used to track the tree
School Outreach Program
In 2020, Nipe Fagio and BORDA Tanzania conducted a school outreach program at Arusha Girls High School on the values of nature and environmental services in cities through an interactive two days outreach training. The outreach activities aimed at raising awareness of the benefits of nature and environmental services in cities and demonstration of the practices that contribute to making that possible. The outreach program in the Arusha Girls High School was only possible because of the collaboration from the Arusha city administration, the city director office, the city Environmental office and the city education office. The outreach component included an awareness creation, Planting of a fruit tree with its importance and the installation of a sustainable subsurface irrigation infrastructure.
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