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Boosting urban forests for Green Parks and recreation areas

Migori urban centers will soon have well maintained Green Parks aimed at boosting county forest cover and promoting local recreation areas within marked urban forests.
County Chief Ecosystem Conservator George Abuto while launching an aggressive tree-planting campaign courtesy of Equity Bank in Government forests at Magena and Mirema Hills on Wednesday said plans are underway to convert forests to accommodate tourists who appreciate nature.
Abuto said the idea is promoting urban forests which in turn will be translated into recreation areas for picnics and local tourism.
He said Kenya Forest Service was in discussion with Equity Bank to help in providing needed facilities at the proposed green park areas together with maintaining safe nature trails.
The County Ecosystem Conservator said the County is moving towards having an arboretum at Magina Hill approximately 3 kilometres from Migori town.
Migori County Equity Bank Branch Manager Dancun Sino said they are targeting to plant close to 80,000 different species of trees in Migori County during short and long rain season.
Sindo said they want to turn Migori County, especially the semi-arid Nyatike Sub-County into green areas to boost rainfall attraction.
The Bank Manager urged the locals to embrace the calls to aggressively plant trees to improve county forest which is at 3 percent, far below the recommended 10 percent.
He said Equity is supporting the planting of 35 million trees countrywide while celebrating 35 years of service to the Kenyans. Sino asked locals to also emulate the Bank by planting trees equivalent to their age.
Nyatike Sub-County Community Forest Association chairman said the government and other key partners move to promote tree planting in Government Forests and Public areas has changed the semi-arid area over time.
He said the area is now receiving two rain seasons which has improved food production.
The chairman revealed that Mirema Hill, at Macalda in Nyatike has close to 1000 acres of land and has changed into a green zone after Government’s aggressive tree-planting efforts.
During the exercise, close to 10,000 trees were planted. Sino promised to closely work with the Kenya Forest Service and other partners interested in the conservation of nature to change Migori into a green county.

By Geoffrey Satia

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