Cross River National Park Communities Receive Inputs For Sustainable Farming

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News in brief:
- The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) has provided farm inputs to communities hosting the Cross River National Park (CRNP).
– Over 4,000 individuals in the park communities have benefited from these initiatives, which include training on farming practices, cocoa cultivation, and supplies for farm work.

The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) has provided women’s groups and farmers in Cross River state with improved varieties of crops and beekeeping equipment. This move seeks to promote sustainable livelihoods and reduce dependence on the Cross River National Park (CRNP) resources, while empowering local communities.

Deputy country director of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), Imong Inayom, spoke at a stakeholders’ meeting with the CRNP and host communities on how to improve the management of the park and reduce pillaging its resources.

Inayom listed varieties of livelihood alternatives they have extended in order to dissuade them from plundering the CRNP. The WCS provision and farming support to farmers is part of its efforts to combat these exploitations and include the provision of dry-season bush mango (ogbono) varieties, which are faster-growing than traditional wet-season types and offer year-round income potential.

Additionally, women were organised into cooperatives and received training on planting and storage techniques. Furthermore, WCS is assisting farmers with transporting produce for fair market prices.

Some farmers received high-yielding cocoa seedlings sourced from the Cocoa Research Institute of Nigeria (CRIN) as well as technical training to improve farming practices and encourage sustainable cocoa cultivation outside protected areas. Additional supplies like rain boots, wheelbarrows, and tarpaulins were distributed to facilitate farm work and product drying.

Over 4,000 individuals in CRNP communities have reportedly benefited from these farm support initiatives.

Joseph Akahome
Joseph Akahome
Joseph O Akahome (OJ) is a writer, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Literature from the University of Benin. He is an avid agriculturist, with a bias for poultry and an insatiable appetite for chicken wings. When he is neither reading nor researching, he likes to spend recreational time playing board games, or swimming in serene forested lakes.

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