Uganda gorilla tracking safari destination of Bwindi impenetrable Forest National Park provides shelter to a minimum of 400 critically endangered mountain gorillas which apparently still stand as the epitome attraction in the Uganda’s tourism product inventory.
Bwindi is a remarkably diverse Uganda Safari
destination featuring myriad of flora including Bamboo species, a range
of birds that include endemics like the Green Broadbill and other
primates like Chimpanzee and Baboons. Surprisingly, this is surrounded
by one of the intense agricultural communities in Africa marked by
extreme levels of land fragmentation.
Though the Bwindi forest was
indeed under threat due to need for more agricultural land, following
its gezzetion and development of gorilla safaris in Uganda,
the surrounding people have found means of living harmoniously with it.
The Kayonza Growers Tea Factory (KGTF) which is a for profit community
initiative under the ownership of 7,205 smallholder tea farmers has
proved beyond doubt that the tea farmers can be at peace with the
Based in Kanungu bordering the northern section
of Bwindi, the members of this initiative have struck an innovative
means of implementing their tea growing programmes without compromising
forest conservation and this is known as eco-agriculture. The initiative
which commenced in the year 2010 has seen a count of over 4,000 farmers
taught things regarding conservation of river banks, wetlands along
with natural forests and as a result, over 20,000 indigenous trees have
been planted on farm margins along with hillsides that have already been
The KGTF’s Chairman Mr. Gregory Mugabe notes that the
initiative was inspired by need to halt the decreasing trend in the tea
production believed to have been caused by shortage of water,
degradation of soil and prolonged drought all of which were brought up
by deforestation. The dream came true in 2010 when the UK based Café
Direct brought in the eco-agriculture initiative. The Café Direct
operates in twelve (12) developing countries and in 2012, it run a
producer challenge centered on climate change which saw KGTF emerge the
winner pocketing $10,000 – the money that pushed the eco-agriculture
initiative on the margins of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park to
The local people through this initiative have not
only achieved environmental conservation but also increased the habitat
for the fauna that can as well be explored on gorilla safaris in Uganda.
The community benefits from tourism development in the area through
local employment in lodges, art and craft centers and conservation along
with market for their produce. This in turn has created a harmonious
environment between the local people and the park where almost a half of
the world’s mountain gorilla population is known to be thriving.