RCE Greater Pwani-2016

1. Project Title: 
Botabical Garden: A Transformative and Holistic Learning Laboratory
2. Thematic area/s addressed by the project
3. Project partner contact information : 
National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA)
Financial and Technical mobilization
Main Contact: 
County Director of Environment, Kilifi County
Dr. Maarifa Ali Mwakumanya
Pwani University
Alternative project contact: 
Dr. Najya Muhammed
Pwani University
4. Project type
5. Project description
Provide a short description of the project including strategies, regional challenges, aims and specific project activities.: 

Pwani University (PU) partnered with the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) to set up a Botanical garden at the University. This was done under a partnership framework to promote both environmental education activities and achievement of the Education for Sustainable Development objectives and by extension the GAP. This project is in tandem with the PU mandate of Education, Research and Community Outreach. The garden is grounded on four pillars namely Education, Research, Recreation and Conservation. It involved surveying of the 10 acre plot and made cabro tracks, mobilizing individual tree/plant species from the community, herbalists and experts and planting and growing of the plants. It also involved labeling of plants in thematic areas. There is continuous enrichment of plants in the thematic areas. The garden is divided into thematic areas such as the Wild food plants, Medicinal plants, Cosmetic and perfume plants, Succulent plants, Timber plants, Flower and colour plant and Grasses. The establishment of the botanical garden drew expertise and experiences form professionals and technical people as well as herbalists from the coastal region and beyond. Since its establishment, the botanical garden has made several achievements which include:

  1.  Enhanced community outreach fostering closer working relationships between the university and the local community. The communities are expected to utilize the facility for recreational purposes, cultural activities, and wedding ceremonies. By tapping into the indigenous knowledge of the local people in the establishment of this facility it opened up opportunities for co-learning between the university and the communities where the flow of knowledge is two-way.
  2. Boost educational programmes within the university and its environs. Environmental education, biological sciences, and agriculture-based programmes are key beneficiaries. The garden is also open to school parties both primary and secondary schools and other learning institutions formal, informal and non-formal from the county and beyond. The garden is enhancing the whole school approach for environmental education.
  3. A site for research activities to provide solutions to environmental, medical, social, and resource utilization challenges facing the Coast Region. This component encompasses domestication of some of the wild plant species such as aloe sp a project already is ongoing.
  4. Created ample site for students’ relaxation and meditation. However, this will be improved to cater for the surrounding communities through organized groups such as schools and women groups
  5. A laboratory for environmental sciences, biological sciences among other disciplines. This will be extended to primary and secondary schools as well other relevant training colleges in Kilifi County.

The challenges have been funding and management of the project. However, the University has provided the leadership and running cost of maintenance and repairs. Herbalists are difficult to handle because of their traditional believes. However, some have been willing to provide medicinal plants for the garden

7. Provide references and reference materials : 
6. Project status
On Going
The project soon open to public especially schools, tertiary colleges and organized community groups. It will also include herbalist who will incubate plants of medicinal value.
8. Tagging