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Reforestation for river bank protection in Chad




Local name of practice: Thiak Birlima

Country/region/village: Chad/Mayo Kebbi Est/Midjoie 

Community: Massa


Facing the degradation of shores, populations in the Mayo Kebbi region in Chad are carrying out restoration actions and river bank protection activities. Heavy rains are followed by water erosion that take away land and crops. Wind and water erosion is causing soil leaching and destruction of crops and loss of organic matter. Thus, to overcome land degradation populations have planted trees to stop landslides to the river. They have adopted an endogenous climate adaptation approach which specifically addresses the need for food security, livelihood supply and river bank protection to counter the negative trend of declining yields and loss of livestock forage. 


Trees are planted on the side of the watershed towards the river in order to limit water erosion and loss of culture. They allow to fix the arable land and to mitigate the effect of the strong winds on the cultures and, in front of the irrigable perimeters, to fight against the silting up of the river. This technology is set up at the banks of the river where the ground are hilly. The steps involved are:
1. The creation of a nursery
2. The plantation
3. The maintenance
4. The monitoring 

Regular checks are made to replant the missing plants. After reforestation, edaphic life resumes on these soils and the rapid development of the vegetation ensures the contribution of the organic matter which fixes the carbon and contributes to actions against the climatic changes. This technology makes it possible to guarantee off-season cultivation. During the dry season off-season crops are irrigated through river waters with traditional irrigation systems and manual pumps. Within the perimeter crops organic fertilizers are used to enhance crop productivity. The population can work individually or in association, there is an implication of the local authority. Women are involved in nursery maintenance and planting support. The species in the plot visited are mainly the prosopice, Acacia albida, Acacia senegalensis. The population has subsequently received support to strengthen the plant fence with barbed wire.

Some of the approaches associated are:

  • The establishment of a village association which is the decision and consultation body
  • The annual planning of the activities accompanied by an annual plan validated by the village association which starts from the setting up of the nursery in January until the marketing of the products
  • Supporting the APR partner in terms of monitoring, consulting and consolidation

The cost of the technology is estimated at 2.5 million (USD 5000) for two (2) hectares

  • The items of expenditure are:
  • Water access equipment;
  • Workforce;
  • The manual pump,
  • 500 m2 of nursery (1500 000 FCFA equivalent of USD 3000);
  • Transplanting (600,000 FCFA equivalent of USD 1200)

Benefits of technology

This technology has allowed lakeshore residents to develop techniques, tools of governance and planning of their natural resource. It also contributes to an increase in their income as the business is profitable and generates an increase in the yields of the fields and the diversification of revenues from the sale of crops and forest plants for the populations. It involves investment from savings and bank loans to finance agricultural inputs, plants, labor, and so on. The technology also contributes to the reduction of the risks and disasters by preventing the river from overflowing it banks and cultural perimeters. Furthermore, the river bank protection contributes to the protection of the ecosystem and biodiversity through the regeneration of forest species, including the return of extinct trees, especially medicinal plants, the return of biodiversity (we note the abundant presence of rabbits, and squirrels) and the restoration of a good micro-climate favorable to crops, animal and fish species,

The direct beneficiaries of the practice are: Households (estimated between 25 and 100 in the village), farmers, populations, associations that benefit from the earnings generated by the crops to meet food needs, health, education, etc. 
The indirect beneficiaries of the practice are : Consumers, breeders, shopkeepers, city dwellers, agronomy trainees, the Bongo Training Center on Sustainable Development 
Other potential beneficiaries: The entire population if technology were to be transferred. It concerns the inhabitants the population of the locality with 18 000 inhabitants, 500 villages and 25 associations 

Gender considerations

Indirect beneficiaries: mothers and their children, school, men and women. Women are involved throughout the process: weeding, sowing, harvesting, winnowing and selling. The fields protected by this technology often belong to men, but women are involved in setting up this system for safeguarding rivers and securing cultivation lands. Women are not at risk using this technology.

Potential for technology transfer and up-scaling

The activity can be developed in the river banks and in rough farmlands affected by very strong winds, heavy rainfall, and clayey soil. The replication of the technology is beginning around other agricultural lands threatened by water erosion and river silting. This technology does not necessarily require a particular level of education. However, the sense of observation is important.

The development of technology is limited by:

  • Great climatic constraints, floods, drought, etc.
  • Destruction of plants by animals (camels and oxen)

It would be possible to transfer the technology although some adaptations are necessary. Important considerations are:

  • Seting up of a local organization,
  • Put in place laws and rules as local conventions or community management rules approved by the state authority around this technology of securing system of river and farmland around river
  • Build the capacity of actors (training)
  • Have a mastery of technology, clearly clarify the status of the field, ownership, availability of water, environmental conditions combined.


Djekore M. 2016. Mission de recueil des meilleures pratiques en matière de gestion durable des terres en vue de leur diffusion, CILSS,  126 p
Dramé A. Kiema A. 2016. Connaissances endogènes : les bonnes pratiques d’atténuation et d’adaptation aux changements climatiques en Afrique de l’Ouest, Enda Energie, 94 p