Innovation and sustainability for tribal women in the mangrove forests of South India
The 8,000-acre mangrove forests in Tamil Nadu are home to around 2,500 flowering plant species, 290 bird species, nearly 4,000 insect species as well as larger animals such as elephants, panthers, bison, bears, and little creatures such as the Grey Slender Loris which is now an endangered species.
It is fundamentally important to restore mangroves. Mangroves are reservoirs of biodiversity with potential to deliver ecosystem services, store water to prevent flooding and capture carbon to prevent global warming. Mangroves forests can lock away 50 times more greenhouse gases per hectare than tropical rainforests and are considered some of the most valuable ecosystems on the planet. The World Bee Project with its local partners SEEDS Trust and Gandhigram Rural Institute has launched two bold restoration and conservation projects in the Eastern Ghats in Tamil Nadu, one in the Ayyalur forest and the other in the Pandiyar mangrove wetlands. To advance solutions for restoring forests and conserving the region’s biodiversity we will use the World Hive Network© to gather bee health and environmental data. Over three years, we will plant 12,000 nectar and pollen rich flowering plants to revitalise habitats and biodiversity and enhance bee and pollinator density and diversity. Throughout, we will take a holistic approach and promote sustainable and regenerative practice through interactions with crops, seeds, and soil.
We need funding to nurture and bring these unique ecosystems back to good health and support the livelihoods of indigenous communities most at risk and help them to thrive. To amplify the individual voices of these women living in adverse, hardship conditions, and improve the wellbeing of their disadvantaged tribal communities, we are providing sustainable beekeeping education, skills, and equipment to 80 disadvantaged women every year for 3 years, and over 3 years introducing 1,200 colonies of honeybees. Their new livelihoods will increase the women’s incomes and enable them to improve their families’ nutrition and health and take up leadership roles in their communities.
The World Bee Project programmes for women are endorsed by Professor Philippe Sands, QC
Connecting Hives, Connecting Lives
To improve management of the Earth’s natural resources for a more sustainable future, the World Hive Network© harnesses the power of bee-derived intelligence for solutions to wider issues of biodiversity, climate change, food security and human wellbeing, and to create strategies and programmes which merge social, environmental, and economic benefits to positively impact the future of Pollinators, People, and the Planet.