Community forest management has become an effective forest management method and has been encouraged to further develop. Vietnam has had legal framework and basic policies on developing community forestry so far, but in fact, the forest resource has continuously been exploited. It is the result of local community’s poor socio-eco conditions and the people do not gain the benefit of forests and are lack of knowledge of their rights and responsibilities in participating in community forest management.
Therefore, with the aim of improving people’s awareness of legal responsibilities and rights toward community forest, developing skill of group working and making plan in sustainable forest management for ethnic community. C&E Center cooperated with its partners to host 4 training courses in 4 project’s communes Thuong Lo, Thuong Nhat communes, Nam Đong district, Thua Thien Hue province and ZaHung, TaLu communes, Đong Giang district, Quang Nam province. This is an activity of the Project “Sustainable Management of Natural Forest through raising awareness and building capacity to improve the rights and legal status of ethnic minority communities to natural forest in central Vietnam (2012-2014) – Year 2012”. The project has been implemented by C&E Center, Forestry Science and Technology Association in Thua Thien Hue and Forest Protection Department in Quang Nam and was supported financially by Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung.
There were 63 people from Thuong Lo, Thuong Nhat communes, Nam Dong district, TT-Hue and 67 people from ZaHung, Talu communes, Dong Giang district, Quang Nam taking part in the training course. Participants were representatives and members of Forest protection and management teams, representatives or respective people of communities (elders, mayors, women, youth…). Some of them are local officials from various organizations and departments i.e: People’s Committee, Forestry Division, Women Union, Farmer Union, Youth League… Respective speakers or trainers are experts with in-depth professional knowledge and actual experience of local community’s tradition and culture, high understanding of the forestry policies. With the appropriate training method to local people, speakers created a friendly environment between them and participants and the classroom’s atmosphere was very lively. The learners were very interested and active in participating in learning, discussions and confident to ask respective speakers to explain the problems they confused clearly.
Almost all of the training courses have initially gained some expected goals. The participants has assessed new knowledge and experience as well as basic information of the courses, particularly rights on using land and forests; legal responsibilities and rights of people, authorities and departments related to community forest management according to law. Before the training, not so many participants knew their rights to log timber and non timber forest products according to the regulation or agriculture and forestry production and development… on community forest land under their management.
The topics of group discussion were not only exercises for participants to practice but also needed issues of community forest protection activities to discuss and find solutions. Participants have learned teamwork skills and known how to work in group, organize group’s activities to make plans in supervising, managing, protecting forest; effectively develop current natural forest in general and local forest in particular. Besides, all participants had their traditional law, and known how to build the regulation of Community Forest protection as well as choosing the best way to excersing their rights based on traditional law and national law.
All participants wants C&E Center to host more training courses for local people to help them improve knowledge and skills in order to protect and manage forest effectively in the coming time.
Some pictures of training courses
In Thua Thien Hue
In Quang Nam