Restoration of Community Forests and Water Bodies

Ammonkurai , Keeranur, Pudukottai - Tamil Nadu

Restoration of Community Forests and Water Bodies

Forests are one of the most important habitats for the biodiversity on Earth, and they also create livelihood for humans. Forests offer watershed protection, timber and non-timber products, wild

berries, herbs for human and animal aliment, they prevent soil erosion, help in maintaining the water cycle, check global warming and also offers various recreational options. Over the past 50 years, about half the world’s original forest cover has been lost, the most significant cause for that being humans beings’ unsystematic use of its resources. When we destroy the forest, it is not just the trees that go. An entire ecosystem falls apart, with dire consequences for all of us.

In the late 80´s Kudumbam started a project of Community Forests in the Pudukottai District (Tamil Nadu), and the Ammankorai Community Forest has been the most successful one. It is an example of how communities can come together to preserve their natural resources, since different communities worked jointly in establishing, nurturing and managing the forest for their livelihood needs. This community forest was established as a viable alternative to monoculture plantations with the participation of farming communities belonging to two Panchayats in the Pudukkottai district, in response to the criticism by the State on the massive campaign initiated by Kudumbam in 1987 against the monoculture plantations of Eucalyptus in village common lands.


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