Refugees in Cameroon transform a desert camp into an oasis1 min read
The north of Cameroon faces a desert climate and a regular drying up of rivers strongly impacting plantations and harvests. A situation which was accentuated in 2014 when more than 70,000 people fled Nigeria and the political regime of Boko Haram to take refuge in the desert in the village of Minawao, having a strong impact on available resources.
It was then in 2018 that the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) joined forces to enable them to transform Camp Minawao into a green oasis and launch a reforestation plan.
The refugees were trained in order to be able to obtain good harvests in a capricious climate, in particular thanks to the “cocoon technique” which consists in burying a water tank in the shape of a vat made with cardboard which surrounds them alot of roots of plants to feed them with a string.
Five years later, more than 360,000 shoots have been planted and cultivated, spread over 141 hectares providing them with enough resources to make essential firewood for their homes and for cooking. There are also fruit trees, acacias, cashew nuts or even moringas producing fruit.
Working together, refugees and locals have made a dream come true by designing this oasis of peace that guarantees them food, fertilizer and water.