At the International Workshop on Faith-based Sustainable Land Management held in Mukono in October 2014, participants were invited to make pledges of action around faith-based agriculture and SLM.
These pledges have been grouped by country and are included below. Please scroll down to read the pledges by participants from Uganda, Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, and Rwanda.
To inform members of the Catholic Youth Network for Environmental Sustainability in Africa (CYNESA) about the existence of faith environment networks; to promote youth engagement in faith-based agriculture; to promote interfaith youth activities in faith-based agriculture; to explore the possibility of organising an interfaith youth workshop on the environment; to upscale training of youth people in environmental conservation, networking and advocacy; to develop resources for young people on faith-based environmental conservation.
– Allen Ottaro, CYNESA.
To share Farming God’s Way (FGW) awareness materials with all Methodist synods in Kenya; Mobilise trainer-of-trainers in FGW. Personal pledge: Mobilise my county government to take up FGW; set up a farm showcasing FGW; qualify as a FGW trainer.
– Augustine Muema Musyime, Methodist Church of Kenya.
To provide technical advice and expertise; assist with resource mobilisation through proposal writing; assist with capacity building through training.
– Dr Dorcas Otieno, Kenya Organisation of Environmental Education (KOEE).
To inform the structures of the Inter-Religious Council of Kenya of the work of ARC and the Kenya Interfaith Network on Environmental Action (KINEA) and to support this work whenever possible.
– Dr Francis Kuria, Inter-Religious Council of Kenya and Africa Council of Religious Leaders.
To promote faith-based agriculture within the network and to individuals; engage religious leaders in climate-smart agriculture methods; teach, train and encourage young people to embrace farming as a source of livelihood; work with people/organisations of like minds to achieve this goal; document the work carried out by faith groups; put more action into environmental care.
– The Reverend Father Dr Charles Odira Kwanya, Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops.
To create awareness among farmers on sustainable agriculture (Farming God’s Way); engage schools in environmental conservation and sustainable agriculture.
– Kennedy Gichira, Anglican Church Of Kenya.
To continue working with the Alliance of Religions and Conservation (ARC) and other partners, both faith-based and secular, on sustainable land management; we will work with all partners to protect our environment and reduce poverty through creating awareness and by using Islamic Farming.
– Najat Abdi, Global One 2015.
To look into all humanly possible ways of working with faith-based organisations and secular groups in creating awareness on the adverse effects of deforestation; to make the Eastlight’s biogas systems affordable to the farmers, especially those around the forest areas.
– Paul M. Mwaura, Eastlight Logistics.
To plant at least 10,000 trees annually for the next five years, especially in water towers [areas] threatened by deforestation. In my individual capacity, I intend to reach more than 1,000 households every year on issues of advocacy/awareness to mitigate the effects of climate change. Help me God.
– Robert Gichunge, Caritas.
To set up demonstration plots on Farming God’s Way in our schools and churches; to continue awareness creation and training for schools and other learning institutions alongside providing alternative basic education on the environment and sustainable development to people outside schools; to develop a theological document on the church’s engagement with the issue of environmental stewardship and sustainable agriculture; to enhance networking activities at the local, national and international levels with community-based and faith-based organisations, NGOs and governmental actors; to promote liturgical materials for enhancing worship in relation to the environment, agriculture and sustainable development; mobilise local resources to sustain this campaign; personally, and in collaboration with the FGW trainers, be a role model for this message of lifestyle and farming practice; to increase the utilisation of green energy.
– The Reverend Eustace Kabui, Presbyterian Church of East Africa.
Taking the issue of farming and sustainable land management to the next level. As of now we are limited to a small region and I pledge to expand and cover a greater region. This will help to bring more of our constituencies on board and be able to induct, sensitise and train them on climate-smart agriculture. This will eventually help to increase food security , improve livelihoods and profit as well as create more employment for many youths. SUPKEM also pledges to engage more with national radio and television stations in order to disseminate the idea of Islamic Farming. This has proved very popular since it will cover a great area as well as engage a wider range of varied participants.
– Abdalla Mohamed Kamwana, Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims (SUPKEM).
Start awareness raising on sustainable land management (SLM) in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment and also the Environmental Protection Agency of Ghana; subject to availability of funds, RELBONET will undertake the introduction of Farming God’s way to rural farmers in Ghana; train programme officers as trainer-of-trainers in faith-based farming.
– Charles Agboklu, Religious Bodies Network on Climate Change
My pledge is the same as that of Charles Agboklu because our pledge is a collective and on behalf of the Religious Bodies Network on Climate Change (RELBONET).
– Sheikh Yacoub Abban, Religious Bodies Network on Climate Change (RELBONET).
To collaborate with faith-based organisations in Ghana to create awareness among peasant farmers on sustainable land and water management practices based on their faith.
– Isaac Charles Acquah, Environmental Protection Agency.
To facilitate the collaboration with faith-based networks to sensitise communities on faithful farming; promote and support rural farmers in practising Farming God’s Way and to better manage the environment sustainably.
– Ivy Lomoty, Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology & Innovation.
From South Africa
To incorporate sustainable land management (SLM) and faith-based farming as an integral area of engagement; to distribute resources to relevant networks and to further capacitate staff and fieldworkers to address SLM issues.
– Juanita Greyvenstein, Southern African Faith Communities Environment Institute (SAFCEI).
To meet with Farming God’s Way in Port Elizabeth to discuss the following possibilities: training in Port Elizabeth Diocese; to discuss with my steering committee the possibility of a FGW/ACSA partnership for training in Eastern Cape dioceses of Umzimvubu, Port Elizabeth, Mthatha and Grahamstown; to contact Bishop Nopece from Port Elizabeth and Bishop Martin from St Mark Diocese to discuss FGW in St Mark Diocese and the possibility of a display garden at Jane Furse; to contact Rev Dr Vicentia Kgabe to discuss the possibility of a food garden at the College of the Transfiguration Seminary in Grahamstown, plus FGW training for seminary students; to use mulch in my garden at home.
– The Reverend Dr Rachel Mash, Anglican Church of South Africa.
To work with the Network of Faiths on Environmental Action in Tanzania (NEFEAT) to realise the plans set in our network; to work closely with my school students and teachers not only on the two programmes set for our school, but also plant trees and practise Farming God’s Way; share with neighbours what I have learned in a practical way.
– Sister Elistaha Mlay, Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tanzania (ELCT) Northern Diocese
To take this message to my society as well as to Tanzanian Muslim society at large; to encourage the National Muslim Council of Tanzania (BAKWATA) on how to educate the youth in madrasas and villages in God’s way of farming; my madrasa has 600 children under my control, so I will use this opportunity to start with them; to plant 50 trees around my school compound before the end of this year; to teach my society in my village and educate them that farming in God’s way is better than the modern one of using chemicals.
– Abubakari R. Rajabu, National Muslim Council of Tanzania
Ethiopian Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus – Development and Social Services Commission (EECMY-DASSC) is committed to continue its engagement in Farming God’s Way; it will work with all faith groups in promoting Low External Input Sustainable Agriculture (LEISA); to continue promoting Farming God’s Way by educating the communities, building their capacity and practicing sustainable agriculture; to engage and promote the objective of the Alliance for Faithful Food and Farming.
– Gelgelo Sadu, Ethiopian Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus – Development and Social Services Commission (EECMY-DASSC),
Continuing training in schools and CPR parishes to increase awareness and values on the issue; initiating a Rwanda network on faiths for environmental action; using Radio Inkoramutima of CPR to reinforce the raising of awareness about the need to protect the environment in our schools and parishes/churches in particular and in our country in general; insisting that the modern technique of farming is in God’s way and introducing it to our schools; involving the church leaders in the deep philosophy of protection and conservation of nature; maintaining a good relationship with the government, especially the environment and agriculture ministries.
– The Reverend Pierre Claver Bisanze, Protestant Council of Rwanda.
To continue to raise awareness among all Christian denominations in Zimbabwe through Heads of Christians Denominations (ZHOCD); promote market-driven organic farming to ensure sustainability of viable activities, mostly for women and youth; engage businesses to pay viable prices for organically produced crops and small livestock (chicken, rabbits and goats).
– David M. Mangemba, Kuhlubuka Development Trust
To reach out to ten Pentecostal groups, each with ten farmers, for training in sustainable land management through Farming God’s Way; promote faithful food and farming in 20 schools using the eco-schools model. Personal pledge: Establish a group of 20 Christians in south-western Uganda to carry out faithful food and farming; set up an individual demonstration garden.
– Adrine Musiime, A Rocha Uganda.
To take a central role in developing and designing a trainer-of-trainer approach in the various communities we are working in and also to strengthen our partnership with ARC in our drive to register sustainable livelihood[s].
– Philip Eric Bakalikwira, Africa Partnership on Climate Change Coalition (APCCC).
We will increase our support in terms of training and mobilising our community to increase Farming God’s Way and tree planting; we will seek partnership with the Alliance of Religions and Conservation; we will offer our structures to support the work of feeding the world through more advocacy and capacity building to religious and community leaders; we will engage government and non-government organisations to support our farmers.
– The Right Reverend Samuel Gidudu, Bishop of North Mbale Diocese, Anglican Church of Uganda
To carry out more improvements, especially in the areas of need, for example, sanitation, holistic education and sustainable development.
– Father Dr Lucien Arinaitwe, Uganda Catholic Secretariat, Education Department.
To properly manage my organisations to continue training others in conservation agriculture and sustainable land management; to multiply the production of fruit trees and trees for firewood; to train the community in biogas and water-harvesting tanks to reduce shortages; to train the community in mulching to preserve the soil.
– George Mpaata, Mukono Farmers’ Association and Bandera 2000
To bring awareness on the issue of the environment and farming to the Bahai community in Uganda; continue with encouraging tree planting into Bahai schools; work with members of the network to advocate for environmental protection and good practices in farming.
– George Olinga, The National Spiritual Assembly of Bahai's.
To mobilise resources and acquire our own land – at least five acres – and set up a model farm using Islamic Farming practices.
– Hajjat Naddima, Uganda Muslim Women Association.
To include and incorporate Islamic Farming into the Greening Friday programme; search for more funds to expand Gomba Women Environment Project (GWEP) to cover all 51 mosques in Uganda and reach at least 500 ladies; design sustainability models for GWEP; enhance and mobilise for more Islamic Farming activities under the Uganda Muslim Women Association (UMWA); effectively participate in UFNEA activities.
– Hajjat Aphwa Kaawaase Sebyala, Energizing Solutions, Uganda.
I will enlarge and properly man my nurserybed for fruit and wood tree-seedling production; every Monday after sunset prayer (Maghrib) I will sensitise my congregation about the dangers of environmental degradation and the advantages of planting trees; around my home, and using part of my land (around one acre), I will commit myself to establishing different vegetables, fruits and cash trees, such as coffee, to effect food security and income generation; in the future I will, with help from any partner, establish a training centre for sustainable agriculture at my home; I will approach nearby schools to bring them on board for their involvement in this noble cause.
– Ismael Kintu, Humanitarian Efforts and Relief (HEAR-Uganda).
For the next two years, in line with faith-based sustainable land management, I pledge to ensure that the Farming God’s Way demonstration gardens started at school are sustained; I also pledge to continue engaging students, parents and neighbouring communities to adopt Farming God’s Way as resources allow. This can be through parents’ meetings, assemblies and by talking to people at my church; develop or formulate a resource centre to serve as a training place for teachers in the neighbourhood and other members across the country; I pledge the commitment of the school administration and teachers in seeing Farming God’s Way take root.
– John Musoke, Kisowera Church of Uganda Secondary School.
To share with the national leadership of the Methodist church in Uganda the importance and goodness of Farming God’s Way so that the clergy incorporate Farming God’s Way into their work plans; to incorporate Farming God’s way in trainings and awareness raising in all ORDS community-based trainings; to bring a tree seedling for each staff member of ORDS to plant in their respective homes.
– Joseph Kyegombe, Office of Relief and Development Support.
I will make all possible effort to influence inclusion of Faithful Farming among the sustainable agriculture practices promoted by PELUM Uganda, especially targeting faith-based organisations within our membership, this will be done through a new strategic planning process in 2015; creating more awareness internally among PELUM staff to [better] understand the concept of Faithful Farming and its potential; I will also personally read more literature on Faithful Farming to understand it better.
– Joshua Aijuka, Participatory Ecological Land Use Management (PELUM)
Start a student green club and train the students in organic Islamic Farming; set up a school garden based on Islamic Farming principles; train more youth in charcoal briquette-making to increase production so we can serve the high demand.
– Katanza Baker, Gomba Green Brigade.
To document and share the best practices by different partners through different publications and platforms including websites, YouTube channel and Facebook; encourage exchange learning visits to different organisations that have best learning practices; continue with environmental awareness through ‘Your Environment Programme’ that airs every Friday at 6.30-7.00pm on Uganda Broadcasting Corporation UBC TV.
– David M. Mwayafu, Uganda Coalition for Sustainable Development (UCSD).
To implement Farming God’s Way (Islamic Farming) to ensure that there is food security and avoid poverty; practice smart agriculture at school and [with the] Gomba Women’s Environment Group.
– Nambi Alizik, Gomba Women Environment Group.
To create awareness about faith-based sustainable land management between our ASPIRE project partners under CRS/Uganda.
– Paul Magira, Catholic Relief Services.
To build awareness through meetings of pastors and their associates in all parts of the conference (Diocese) and through meetings of women leaders, youth leaders, church leaders, head teachers, teachers and health service workers; the pastors’ training curriculum will include a component of sustainable land management (Prime Institute of Applied Technology and Mass Communication); to conduct a training-of-trainers programme for youth and women leaders; to green primary and secondary schools as well as church grounds where every pastor works; nurserybed establishment in four strategic locations; promote Adventist model home with Farming God’s Way; use SDA Church F.M. [radio] station to mobilise people to farm in God’s way.
– Pastor James Kaggya, Central Uganda Conference of the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
In the next two years, build women’s capacity in faith farming focusing on organic farming for food security and economic empowerment; build capacity and implement Farming God’s Way in our schools in Uganda; document best agricultural practice from the women in our communities; to establish a demonstration garden for botanical, fruit and vegetable trees. This garden will support women to learn about planting trees for economic empowerment for families.
– The Reverend Sister Mary Goretti Kisakye, Women and Family Development Initiative.
To create awareness among the congregations that I come into contact with to promote Farming God’s Way because it is the only way we shall be able conserve the environment, increase food production and save people who go hungry.
– The Reverend Geoffrey Kagoye, Anglican Church of Uganda, Mukono Diocese.
To work with mosques and neighbouring schools to create awareness about conservation agriculture; to train teachers and mosque immams to practice Farming God’s Way; to work with schools in Wakiso and Mityana districts to establish demonstration gardens before the end of October 2014.
– Sulaiman Sibamuwe, School Environmental Focus.
To put more effort into my small-scale farming.
– Solomy Batwawula, Christian Farming Women’s Group.
To encourage all our learners to protect and promote sustainability and manage the environment well, by planting more trees and vegetables; to train my family and community to respect the environment; to start planting more trees near my homestead and encourage our children to plant and protect the environment around them; to be more committed to environmental education as an educational professional.
– Sister Justa Thotira, Uganda Catholic Secretariat, Education Department.
To carry out awareness-raising activities among my own people, in villages and beyond, reaching the clergy and the people, towards sustainable farming and sustainable land management as a religious responsibility; to conduct training, reaching farmers within the country and beyond, propagating the Farming God’s Way principles to reduce poverty, hunger and dependency; to strengthen and widen the scope of training on environmental management (governance) to incorporate schools, prisons, hospitals – not limiting to farmers – and encourage wide tree planting for economic purpose through the raising of tree nurseries.
– Pastor Thomas Lubari, Advocacy for Human and Environmental Safety, Life Gospel Ministries.
To continue with collaborations and partnerships with faith groups and communities to achieve a shared conservation goal; to recruit more faith schools under the Jane Goodall Institute’s Roots & Shoots programme; to finalise the adaptation process of the faith-based ESD toolkit; to promote organic farming in our target communities.
– Umar Tumwine, Jane Goodall Institute (JGI).
To go to my church, communities, schools, and other organisations, [to talk] about environmental conservation and farming in God’s way. This is the only way of managing our land without destroying our environment. Human beings are stewards of the God’s creation. People are supposed to take care of the environment as it’s stated in the Bible, Genesis 1:26-27. (Then God said, ‘Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground. So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.’). Environmental conservation will save the soil. Micro-organisms improve soil aeration: termites, bacteria, earthworms. For these reasons, I have to go to the communities to educate them for the purpose of conserving the environment.
– Victor Kisangala, Presbyterian Church of East Africa (PCEA) Omega Christian High School.
To continue carrying out advocacy, supporting communities in protecting the environment; to practice Islamic Farming on my farm; to work on the Green Farm project and ensure that our dream of planting three million trees is realised; to teach more people improved farming methods to boost their food security.
– Immam Kasozi, Uganda Muslim Youth Assembly (UMYA).
To continue to train vulnerable people, youth, women and the disabled in all sectors of faith in Uganda. The vision of Send a Cow Uganda is ‘free of poverty and malnutrition’.
– Timothy Njakasi, Send a Cow, Uganda and Kasenge Riverford Organic Training Centre.
To scale up the mainstreaming of environmental care, food security and sustainable land management into our programmes in schools through: mobilisation and sensitisation, supporting school projects on the environment and conservation agriculture, fundraising and capacity building.
– Isa Matovu, Uganda Muslim Teachers’ Association.
In the next two years, the Uganda Faiths’ Network on Environmental Action (UFNEA) will expand its membership; implement part of its strategic plan and mobilise stakeholders to do the right thing.
– Muguluma Hamed, Uganda Faiths’ Network on Environmental Action and HEAR-Uganda.
To promote Farming God’s Way in vulnerable places; to create increased access to food and water harvested in refugee settlements through the permaculture project; to train people in business skills; to distribute seeds (natural, not GM); to preach the gospel and encourage faith-based agriculture, such as making compost; to train people in the refugee settlement on how they can produce a better harvest without using chemicals; to train the same people in fish farming; to empower refugees and vulnerable people to become self-reliant.
– Aganze Ntafakabiri Clovis, Refugee Permaculture Team Network Camps.
To explore opportunities for greater collaboration with faith-based organisations in the areas where we work; to continue to solicit support that will enhance conservation agriculture among the communities we work with; to interface with individual organisations that can provide technical support for environmentally friendly technologies.
– Dr Pantaleon Kasoma, Jane Goodall Institute (JGI).