Adanach Agegnehu, a mother of three lives in Kulfo site Arbaminch town located in the Southern part of Ethiopia, a pilot site for biodiversity conservation.
The Mainstreaming Incentive for Biodiversity Conservations (MIBC) project supported by UNDP and Global Environment Facility works to ensure current and future threats of development and investment decisions do not impact biodiversity negatively.
The project uses Community Based Organizations (CBOs) where Adanech is a member to rehabilitate 7500 ha of biodiversity hotspot area improving soil and water conservation structures, tree planting and protecting the site from further animal and human interference.
The conservation work of the project also helps to reduce the risk of flooding in the area. The municipality has acknowledged the substantive work done by the project to reduce flooding and hence agreed to pay 500,000 ETB to the CBOs as a payment for Ecosystem Conservation scheme (PES).
The conservation work of the project was commended by the vice mayor of Arbaminch town, Ato Mado Mengesha, who said, “The municipality has witnessed a significant change since the implementation of the conservation interventions for flood mitigation through the Community Based Organizations CBOs”. He added, the project hugely decreased the amount of damage caused by flood which has been affecting the town and displacing people. The flood emergency response cost almost went down to zero from previously recorded average of 2.4 million ETB per flood incidence during the rainy season.
Adanch’s family was one of the survivors of the flood that affected the residents of Arbaminch. Her 70-year-old aunt’s house was destroyed by the flood though her life was spared with the intervention of community members who also helped to save her sister. Adanech said she was lucky to find her family alive.
However, after the intervention of the Mainstreaming Incentive for Biodiversity Conservations project, Adanch and her family are now enjoying a worry free sleep in the rainy seasons. Moreover, they have become part of the beneficiaries from the municipality Payment for Ecosystem Services payment.