Submitted by: Austrian Development Agency / Eco - Himal / Haashar
Implemented country: Austria
Title: Upper Shiran Human and Natural Resources Development Project, Pakistan
The project is located in the most western Himalaya ranges of Upper Siran in the Mansehra District of the North West Frontier Province (NWFP), Pakistan. In the past the Upper Siran was covered with abundant coniferous forests. However, the situation has rapidly changed during the last decades. The population has doubled during the past 20 years and people still rely greatly on the forest as a main source of living. Besides using wood for their daily lives, forests are one of the few opportunities to earn income in this area. The aim of this project is the conservation of forests and other natural resources. To achieve this objective, the project seeks to place the management of the forests in the hands of the local communities, who in the past had only limited user rights. A central element is the consolidation of community-based Joint Forest Management Committees (JFMCs). These committees are a tool for the communities to manage the forests jointly with the Forest Department, thereby increasing their responsibility and ownership and securing a sustainable utilization of forests and other natural resources.