Our projects not only focus on reforestation, they provide many locals with good paying, stable employment which injects much needed resources into the local communities and done with techniques so as to best reestablish and permanently protect the natural habitats & species of the region.
Who’s Planting your trees?
In many ways, Biak seems more a part of Papua New Guinea than Indonesia. It’s home to dozens of Indigenous ethnic groups who speak different dialects than the main islands. As a result, they face significant racism and therefore challenges around employment, lack of government support, and very little education funding.
The majority of these villages struggle to find stable income and mainly live subsistence lifestyles. The men support their families through fishing, while women find odd jobs and work labour to supplement their income and pay for the bare essentials. In many of these areas, the lack of stability leads to the villagers turning to destructive means like sand mining, dynamite fishing, and crime to support their families.
Eden Reforestation encourages local communities to become stewards of the land and drive the reforestation efforts through their “Employ to Plant” initiatives. They prioritize reforestation along with the success and growth of communities. These projects give communities additional opportunities to not only be involved but to drive the reforestation of their area, build up the local economy and ecosystems, and improve the quality of life for everyone.
Our planting sites in Indonesia are found on Biak island, located off the northern coast of West Papua. Biak’s interior is covered by lush tropical rainforest, while mangrove forests line the coasts. These forests provide habitats for native mammal and bird species and significantly benefit local communities.
We have two planting projects on Biak: mangrove restoration on the eastern edge of the island near Mnurwar, and a partnership with the village of Korem to plant pineapple trees, mangroves, and tropical forest. These efforts include the restoration of mangroves, tropical forests, and agroforestry.
What's the impact?
Provide stability for the land and protect against coastal erosion.
Create a buffer to protect from storm destruction.
Protect biodiversity through restoring and expanding habitat.
Restore underwater habitats and revitalize fish populations.
Prevent further environmental devastation and encourage land stewardship by involving locals in reforestation.
Sequester carbon to help combat climate change.
Provide steady employment and income to those who had little or no income. Positions at this site include planters and site managers.
Empower Indigenous communities and provide resources to help combat inequality.
Empower the local communities to restore and protect their land.
Steady income allows local Eden workers to:
Improve health and wellness. Families can afford healthcare and to improve their diets with more nutritious and varied food.
Upgrade their standard of living. Locals can now buy simple items that significantly improve their quality of life, such as beds, mattresses, solar panels, and radios.
Invest in education. Families have the ability to pay for school fees and send their children to school.
Invest in the Future. Locals are empowered to put aside savings, start microenterprises to diversify their income opportunities, plan for the future and work towards purchasing land and building houses that will be a legacy for their children.
How it started
In 2017, work began to restore mangrove forests in Indonesia. By initiating meetings with local leaders, planting sites were identified and the local community’s needs were greatly considered. The leaders on Biak Island had already realized an urgent need for forest restoration and had independently launched a small-scale mangrove reforestation effort. Recognizing the potential for large-scale restoration, they partnered with Eden Reforestation Projects to initiate mangrove reforestation projects. This paved the way for them to launch projects and hire local community members to start planting on Biak Island in West Papua.
How it's going
After only one year, planting efforts far exceeded initial expectations, with over 1.7 million trees planted by the local communities. Since then, expansion has led to a total of fifteen project sites in several remote islands and the mainland of West Papua. Through reforestation and agroforestry programs, hundreds of people living in extreme poverty are given new opportunities for economic self-sufficiency and food security.
30+ million trees have now been produced, planted & protected
520+ employees have been empowered with fair wages
Indonesia is not only one of the worlds favorite tourism destinations but also one of the most biodiverse regions on the planet and home to about 23% of the world’s mangrove forests. However, in the last 50 years, Indonesia has lost over 40% of its mangrove forests. The effects of deforestation have significantly impacted indigenous communities, who are often the first to feel the negative effects of climate change.
40 million people live below
the poverty line
80% of Indonesia's original forests have been lost