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A women-centred project working in one of the most deforested countries in Africa and restoring a critical water catchment for Kenya's people.


International Tree Foundation (ITF)

Foothills of Mt Kenya in the Irangi Forest

Located in the foothills of Mount Kenya, this project aims to reforest and restore a vital water catchment that delivers an estimated 40% of the country's water and gathers communities around rehabilitating their forests and agricultural lands. While only 7% of Kenya is covered by trees, making it one of Africa's countries most affected by deforestation, its forests are crucial for wildlife, freshwater resources, and the materials they provide to local people. Kenya's rural communities heavily depend on forests for their livelihoods. Yet, with increased demand for wood for domestic and industrial uses, land development, settlements, and cultivation, Mount Kenya's forests are threatened with extinction.




Hectares of forest planted to date

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Habitats of critically endangered black rhinoceros and leopards



Trees to plant per year


Not only do the forest ecosystems provide livelihoods, but their rivers support Kenya's vital economic sectors, including water, hydropower, agriculture, livestock and tourism. By taking a collaborative and participatory approach with local communities and community leaders, the project aims to prevent further deforestation through agroforestry, awareness-raising initiatives and capacity building. This approach seeks to improve community nutrition and health and increase household savings and income. The project has engaged over 1800 community members in rehabilitation work with a 53% female workforce. The increased income provides the opportunity to send local children to school and encourages more active participation in the decision-making and management of the land, particularly among women. It also places women as "green agents of change" and at the heart of the reforestation efforts. Planting partner ITF works alongside local organisations to provide women with the necessary training and support and hold workshops on gender equality for both men and women.

"Restoration of our forests is a collective responsibility. Trees are crucial to our living. Without trees we have no rain. We starve."

Jacinta Karoki - beneficiary - Kithoka Belt.


East African montane forests are classified as critically threatened with extinction. Without its mountainous rainforests and perennial ice and snow, Kenya would become a desert. The project aims to rehabilitate 105 hectares each year into a semi-natural forest with tree species composition to levels approximating native forests at similar altitudes in Mount Kenya.
By shifting towards agroforestry on communities' lands, this project aims to reduce pressure on the existing forest, restore semi-natural forests & plant crucial trees on farmlands. This approach also helps protect critically endangered species like the black rhinoceros and leopard and supports African elephants by protecting and restoring their habitats.


Mount Kenya is the second-highest mountain in Africa and holds immense cultural value. Rich biodiversity exists on the doorstep of dense populations and poverty, and daily threats to the forests and wildlife are inevitable and complex. TreeSisters have been supporting this project since 2016, as it consistently evolves to meet the needs of the landscape and communities.
TreeSisters funding currently supports reforestation in three locations: Magaca (Irangi Forest) and Maranga (Magaca Forest) in Embu County and Upper Imenti (Upper Imenti Forest) in Meru County. These sites have been decimated through a combination of human settlements, farming and inappropriate forest management practices, including illegal logging.

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