The Environmental Forum for Action

ENFORAC: Working together for a healthy environment in Sierra Leone

Recognizing that individual efforts are not sufficiently effective in addressing growing environmental challenges of Sierra Leone, 15 green actors joined forces in 2004 to “work together for a healthy environment in Sierra Leone” using their wide range of expertise. The Environmental Forum for Action (ENFORAC) aims to bring about unity in action to influence policy, management, donor agendas and behaviour at a national level. ENFORAC supports and coordinates its members’ direct implementation and environmental activities in Sierra Leone. The Forum allows member organizations as well as guests to meet, discuss and exchange information, network and avoid duplication of efforts. ENFORAC also supports its members by building the capacity of each organization through skill trainings and cooperative ventures. The Forum is guided by a constitution, and meetings are held bi-monthly.

ENFORAC is a consortium of environmental organizations working together to conserve the environment and to raise awareness nationwide on environmental issues. It is a coalition of environmental non-governmental organizations, community groups and academic institutions who have come together as a united voice to maximize their impact on policy. management and to raise awareness nationwide on environmental issues.

Current activities
The member organizations of ENFORAC will be the implementing partners of the Conservation of the Western Area Peninsula Forest Reserve and its Watershed Project (WAPFoR) through 2012. This important project seeks to insure an adequate water supply to Freetown through the conservation and recovery of the Forest Reserve.

In recognition of the critical link between a healthy environment and human security, ENFORAC places immediate priority on conserving the Western Area Peninsula Forest Reserve (WAPFoR) as part of a sustainable management plan for the Western Area. The WAPFoR, at the edge of the Upper Guinea Forest Block, is a highly threatened globally significant ecosystem. It provides crucial ecosystem services to 1.5 million Sierra Leoneans in the Freetown area. Migration from the provinces to Freetown has resulted in enormous pressure on the limited resources in the Reserve. Urban expansion continues to encroach on the very forests that maintain and protect Freetown’s water catchments.

Since its formation in 2004, ENFORAC has:
• executed a national conference on sustainable environmental management in October 2004 in which national priorities were agreed by civil society and government stakeholders in Sierra Leone;
• hosted an international workshop which brought together over 50 people from 17 countries to assess a $6.2 million investment in biodiversity conservation in West Africa; and
• organized several events, debates, and peaceful marches to celebrate occasions such as World Environment Day and Wildlife Week.
• Drawn attention to the importance of dry land ecosystems in areas at risk of destruction from bush fires in Sierra Leone through an environmental awareness raising campaign funded by IUCN NL.

History of ENFORAC
In 1996, EFA, the Conservation Society of Sierra Leone (CSSL), and a few interested individuals, were working on a national, program for environmental activism. This work was interrupted following the coup, d’etat in 1997 when the main parties left the country. Back on track, in 2004 EFA, hosted a meeting resulting in ENFORAC’s formation. The meeting was funded by CEPF, IUCN NL, UNDP and GTZ (SL). ENFORAC formed in response to the urgent need for stronger action to protect and advocate for Sierra Leone’s natural resources. Since then ENFORAC has been a key, national player on environmental issues, undertaking a number of high, profile events.

Tommy Garnett, Director of Regional Programmes for EFA served as the chairperson of ENFORAC from October 2005. This year (2010) a new chairperson will be elected.

EFA has chaired the Environmental Forum for Action since 2005 and ENFORAC’s success has recently allowed them to move into their own independent offices on Dundas Street in Freetown.

ENFORAC MEMBERS
Biosalone: The Biotechnology Association of Sierra Leone
BRACO: The Beautification, Rehabilitation and Conservation Organisation
CADEM: Community Advocacy and Development Movement
CBR: Center for Biodiversity Research
CSSL: Conservation Society of Sierra Leone
CHEC-SIL: Council for Human Ecology-Sierra Leone
Fourah Bay college: the department of biological sciences faculty of pure and applied sciences
FOESL: Friends Of the Earth Sierra Leone
Green Scenery
NUBIO: Njala University, department of BIOlogical sciences
One sky: the Canadian institute for sustainable living
OREINT: Organization for Research and Extension of Intermediate Technology
Tacugama: Chimanzee Sanctuary Sierra Leone, Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Programme
UEJ-SL: Union of Environmental Journalists Sierra Leone
EFA: Environmental Foundation for africa

Get in touch
If you would like more information on ENFORAC, or to schedule an interview with our national coordinator, Mr. Ansumana Swarray.

ENFORAC
19 Dundas Street
Freetown
email to enforac@yahoo.com