Protection of forest and resources equals progress

(c) Harald van der Hoek

DR Congo – Water and forests are inextricably linked, and are essential to our planet, particularly in rich ecosystems such as the Congo Basin. Protecting forests and their water resources is also a source of progress for the people who use them and live in them.

World Water Day is celebrated – coincidentally or not? – just after World Forest Day. Both days highlight the vital interconnection between forests and water, essential resources for the planet, particularly in rich ecosystems such as the Congo Basin.

Joining forces to protect water and forests

Join For Water, and our team in DR Congo in particular, invite everyone to play an active part in protecting and preserving our invaluable water and forest resources. We call on civil society organizations, users, companies, scientists, donors and communities to join forces in this crucial battle.

Change is possible: from degradation to regeneration in Idiofa

In the Idiofa region, over 800 km from Kinshasa, we are witnessing the consequences of human pressure transforming forests into savannahs, mainly to satisfy the demand for wood as a source of energy. Here, our partner Faja Lobi has already restored over 6,000 hectares of forest that had turned to savannah. This helps to counter the effects of climate change and promotes biodiversity. These actions are in line with the SDGs, the African Union’s Agenda 63*, and the Bonn Challenges.

In collaboration with Faja Lobi and the local community, Join For Water has made 24 hectares of land on the edge of the forest usable for horticulture. Women and men are trained in efficient, sustainable horticulture and the local marketing of their produce. This creates a new source of income, eliminates the need to clear the forest and provides direct access to water. The forest and its water sources are now protected and, with the help of our local partners, can now recover at an accelerated rate.

Progress in the Tshopo region: access to drinking water for 3,000 people

In the Tshopo region, we are working with our partners on drinking water infrastructure to provide good quality drinking water to over 3,200 people. We plan to drill at least 8 boreholes for water. And with our partners, we support local communities in the sustainable management of forest concessions.

Advocacy for the protection of freshwater ecosystems

At provincial and national level, we advocate the protection of freshwater ecosystems, such as areas around springs, rainforests and riverbanks. In this way, we work for the equitable management and use of water resources, so that the fundamental right to water becomes a reality for all.

* The continent’s strategic framework for achieving its goal of inclusive and sustainable development. Agenda 2063 | African Union (

Based on a Linkedin post by David Ushindi Chishugi


Images of the Idiofa region © Harald van der Hoek