Welcome note

Welcome to the website of Forest of Hope Association (FHA).

Forest of Hope Association (FHA) is a National Rwandan Non Government Organization (NGO) focusing on the conservation of the Gishwati Forest Reserve in Western Rwanda. Established in January 2012, FHA emerged from – and builds on the Gishwati Area Conservation Program (GACP), an International NGO that worked on conservation of the Gishwati Forest Reserve from 2008 through 2011.

From 2008 to current, impressive conservation impacts have been achieved at Gishwati: illegal use of the forest declined sharply; the size of the reserve increased from 886 to 1,484 hectares, the number of chimpanzees grew from 13 to 25, the 600 hectares added to the core forest are naturally regenerating and chimpanzees started using this area. Social impact is also obvious: local jobs have been generated (GACP employed 29 people and currently FHA has full time 11 staff of which 9 filled by local people; 13 school eco-clubs were established and participate in annual competitions, the capacity of 10 local cooperatives is increased in cooperative management and improving their products, and the capacity of 3 community groups is increased in community tourism development.

FHA - after its predecessor GACP - has been critical to the survival of Gishwati Forest and its biodiversity. We are taking the GACP mission forward by continuing engaging local communities in conservation of the Gishwati Forest Reserve. Our main activities are conservation education, mitigating crop raiding, improving local livelihoods and facilitating research on the biodiversity of the Gishwati Forest Reserve. I hope you will find our website informative and interesting.