CBA Guatemala: Tree Nursery Activities for Reforestation in the Taltimiche Plains (APRODIC)

Introduction

Hurricane Stan was the eighteenth named tropical storm and eleventh hurricane of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season in Central America.  Floods and mudslides obliterated many communities including the project site, the Taltimiche village. Located in the highlands of Guatemala’s San Marcos department, the communities’ lands were completely destroyed. To cope with the damages, the community members started planting tree nurseries using their own money. However, climate change variabilities such as torrential storms with strong winds, higher temperatures, longer summer seasons with prolonged periods of droughts and occasional frosts exacerbate the soil erosion and water shortage in the area, increasing the occurrence of landslides. These lead to loss of agricultural production of basic grains and threaten the food security of the community members who locally produce 70-80% of the food they consume. In addition to relying on agriculture for subsistence, the community members also rely on agriculture for income generation.

In this regard, this Community-Based Adaptation project enhances the communities’ on-going activities by building nurseries to produce 35,000 trees of native species such as pine, alder, oak and cypress.  Using a participatory approach, knowledge-raising and capacity-building workshops are given to the community members on climate change, its impacts and the adaptive solutions including:  reforestation, soil conservation techniques, crop management and revitalizing other native species such as potatoes and beans.  Terracing, using stones, and other techniques to help lessen the damages of landslides are also covered.

Project Details

Hurricane Stan was the eighteenth named tropical storm and eleventh hurricane of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season in Central America.  Floods and mudslides obliterated many communities including the project site, the Taltimiche village. The communities’ lands in the highlands of Guatemala’s San Marcos department were completely destroyed.

To cope with these damages, the community members started planting tree nurseries using their own money. However, climate change variabilities such as torrential storms with strong winds, higher temperatures, longer summer seasons with prolonged periods of droughts  and occasional frosts exacerbate the soil erosion and water shortage in the area, increasing the occurrence of landslides. These lead to loss of agricultural production of basic grains and threaten the food security of the community members who locally produce 70-80% of the food they consume. In addition to relying on agriculture for subsistence, the community members also rely on agriculture for income generation.

In this regard, this Community-Based Adaptation project enhances the communities’ on-going activities by building nurseries to produce 35,000 trees of native species such as pine, alder, oak and cypress.  Using a participatory approach, knowledge-raising and capacity-building workshops are given to the community members on climate change, its impacts and the adaptive solutions including:  reforestation, soil conservation techniques, crop management and revitalizing other native species such as potatoes and beans.  Terracing, using stones, and other techniques to help lessen the damages of landslides are also covered.

Climate-Related Hazards Addressed: 
Level of Intervention: 
Primary Beneficiaries: 
Subsistence Farmers; Highland Communities
Implementing Agencies & Partnering Organizations: 
Asociación de Proyectos de Desarrollo Integral de Comitancillo
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Global Environment Facility (GEF)
The GEF Small Grants Programme
UN Volunteers
Project Status: 
Under Implementation
Location: 
Rural
Funding Source: 
Financing Amount: 
$19,376.44
Co-Financing Total: 
$39,203.85

Key Results and Outputs

 

Project Objective: Implement climate change adaptation in the Village Taltimiche, Comitancillo Township, promoting community participation have livelihoods.

Outcome 1.0: Development of a nursery for trees to get to later transplanted to areas where the number of trees need little or reforestation.It will produce 35.000 seedlings of pine and alder species in an area of 2 strings.

Output 1.1: Training Forest nursery.

Output 1.2: Management Nursery

Outcome 2.0: Production of organic fertilizer through composting. One for each partner (40 in total)

Output 2.1: Training on the development of composting

Output 2.2: Development and management of composting

Outcome 3.0: Soil Conservation in 0.88 acres to prevent erosion, landslides and loss of fertility.

Output 3.1: Training on Soil Conservation

Output 3.2: Development of soil conservation structures

Outcome 4.0: Reforestation with native species 80 strings ( Cupressus (cypress), Pinus (pine), Quercus (oak) and Alnus (alder).

Output 4.2: Management Training Reforestation.

Output 4.5: Reforestation and management

Outcome 5.0: 9 trainings for strengthening knowledge and skills of 40 male and female members of the group.

Output 5.1: Development of 9 trainings with topics: Gender, climate change, adaptation to climate change, domestic violence, administration and finance, biodiversity, community organization, pesticides and organic fertilizers.

Outcome 6.0: Production and management of crops (potatoes and beans)

Output 6.2: Management of potato production.

Output 6.3: Management of bean production

Monitoring and Evaluation

Monitoring and evaluation for community-based adaptation is a new field, and the CBA project is piloting innovative approaches to evaluating the success of locally-driven adaptation projects, and generating lessons to inform ongoing practice.

Key considerations in M&E for CBA include:

  • Grounding M&E in the local context: M&E for CBA should avoid overly rigid frameworks, recognizing community heterogeneity and maintaining local relevance
  • Capturing global lessons from local projects: CBA projects are highly contextualized, but lessons generated should be relevant to stakeholders globally
  • Incorporation of both quantitative and qualitative indicators: to ground projects in tangible changes that can be objectively evaluated, and to capture lessons and case studies for global dissemination

To these ends, the CBA project uses three indicator systems: the Vulnerability Reduction Assessment, the Small Grants Programme Impact Assessment System, and the UNDP Climate Change Adaptation Indicator Framework.

The Vulnerability Reduction Assessment (VRA)

The VRA is a question-based approach with the following aims:

  • To make M&E responsive to community priorities
  • To use M&E to make projects more accountable to local priorities
  • To make M&E capture community ideas and local knowledge
  • To gather community-level feedback to guide ongoing project management
  • To generate qualitative information
  • To capture lessons on specific issues within community-based adaptation
  • To generate case studies highlighting adaptation projects

The VRA follows UNDP's Adaptation Policy Framework, and is measured in a series of meetings with local community stakeholders. In these meetings, locally-tailored questions based on standard VRA questions/indicators are posed, and the community assigns a numerical score on a 1-10 scale for each question. Progress is evaluated through changes in scores over the course of implementation, as well as through qualitative data collected in community discussions surrounding the exercise.

UNDP has developed a Users Guide to the VRA (Espanol) (Francais) as a tool to assist practitioners to conceptualize and execute VRA measurements in the context of CBA projects.

The SGP Impact Assessment System (IAS)

The CBA, being a project of the GEF Strategic Priority on Adaptation, aims to increase the resilience of ecosystems and communities to the impacts of climate change, generating global environmental benefits, and increasing their resilience in the face of climate change impacts. To this end, the CBA projects use the SGP's impact assessment system for monitoring achievements in GEF focal areas (focusing primarily on biodiversity and sustainable land management).

The IAS is composed of a number of quantitative indicators which track biophysical ecosystem indicators, as well as policy impact, capacity development and awareness-building.

UNDP Climate Change Adaptation Indicator Framework

CBA projects also track quantitative indicators from UNDP's adaptation indicator framework, corresponding to the thematic area on natural resources management. More information on UNDP's indicator framework can be found on the UNDP climate change adaptation monitoring and evaluation website.

 

This description applies to all projects implemented through UNDP's Community-Based Adaptation programme. Specific details on this project's M&E will be included here as they become available. *

Contacts

UNDP
CBA Project Management Unit