With her organisation Integrated Women’s Development, Ruhama gets women in Ethiopia involved in reforesting land that has been degraded by deforestation.
The Amazon of the Environment
Trained engineer and prizewinner of the first ever edition of the Yves Rocher Foundation’s International Award, Ruhama has been working to reforest land that has been degraded by deforestation since 2012. She is very sensitive to this important issue in the country and works alongside reforestation programmes with Green Ethiopia Foundation, a partner of the Yves Rocher Foundation.
Ruhama’s father worked in the field of water conservation, which made her aware of environmental issues from an early age. She grew up questioning the absurdity of the destruction of nature by humans.
Today, I have the opportunity to act with my organization, Integrated Women’s Development, and I work hard to get women involved. They are on the front line, at all levels. They contribute to damaging the environment by cutting wood to make charcoal. Soil erosion and depletion, that then leads to stunted crops as well as a lack of water, makes their lives more precarious. They suffer from the consequences of their own actions. My aim is to break the vicious cycle.
Women acting to restore the land
Protecting the environment and improving women’s living conditions are Ruhama’s goals. Women make up more than half of the population. According to Ruhama, if given the means to work to improve their future, they will act to protect the environment and guarantee a good life for their children. Ruhama’s reforestation programme helps restore soils that have been damaged by deforestation in Ethiopia. By including them in her reforestation programme over an area of 600 hectares, Ruhama allows women to improve their own living conditions and those of their families. To further combat deforestation, Ruhama installed stoves that reduce fuel consumption in villages.
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