Guidelines for Establishment of Partnerships, Forest Resources and Resource User’s Boundaries in Kenya
Ming’ate, Felix Lamech Mogambi
Mũsingo, Tito E. Mbuvi
Nahama, Eric Tetea
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Participatory forest management has been globally studied and it has been argued that clearly defined boundaries for access of the community forest resources will lead to sustainable use of resources and enhanced sustainable livelihoods to the communities dependent on the forests for their survival. In contrast, however current studies indicate that while there are efforts to define spatial boundaries of resource use and the resource users within the community based forest management approaches, the definition of boundaries of resource use and resources users has proved more difficult, for instance when gathering relevant information and tools that can promote forest resource users partnerships, engaging of different stakeholders, assisting local communities to organize, preparing for negotiations meetings, procedures, rules, logistics and equity considerations, negotiating for the establishment of agreements and empowering of the local communities. This book therefore provides a process that would guide the establishment of partnerships when establishing forest resources and resource users’ boundaries in order to enhance sustainable use of forest resources, mitigate conflicts and improve the livelihoods of communities depended on forests for their survival. Qualitative research design was employed in the book. All the forests involved in participatory forest management in Kenya namely: Keraite; Nyamweru, Arabuko-Sokoke Forest, Kakamega, Loita, and upper Imenti were selected for to provide information for writing the book. All the respondents were purposefully sampled from each category of interviewees namely: households living adjacent to the forest, various groups that are working in or with the communities in the management of the forest resources. Policy makers from government and a group of experts e.g. head of various government ministries and Non-Governmental organizations. To collect data semi-structured interviews were done for the respondents. All the data collected was analyzed through coding and grouping similar important ideas or phenomena from the research and then used for writing the book. It is explained in the book that functional partnerships, forest resources and resource user’s boundaries are needed for effective community participation in forest management. It is recommended that broad understanding of boundaries is a pre-requisite to ensure that community and other stakeholders appreciate resource use and the resource users within the community based forest management approaches so as to facilitate sustainable use of forest resources and enhanced community livelihoods of the forest dependent communities.