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Botswana gets FIRM

Six DMP partners from Botswana traveled to Namibia's Gobabeb Training and Research Centre during 13-18 June 2005 to absorb the approaches of the Forum for Integrated Resource Management (FIRM) and Local Level Monitoring (LLM) to enhance natural resource management.

The workshop was ably conducted by Mr. Bertus Kruger of the Desert Research Foundation of Namibia (DRFN), who is also the DMP's Namibia Country Coordinator. He utilized the Participatory Learning Approach (PLA) methodology.


FIRM aims to ensure ownership and leadership of development priorities by local communities themselves. Through this forum, all key stakeholders with an interest in development at community level combine efforts and resources to address these issues. Here is more information on the FIRM approach. The DMP-Botswana team learned how to establish FIRM and developed a 2005/06 Workplan to establish and implement FIRM in Botswana.


LLM can be used directly by farmers to collect information on important indicators so that they can make timely management decisions to take better care of natural resources. Farmers themselves measure the indicators, and work with their communities to apply this information to improve land management. In the workshop, the DMP-Botswana team became familiar with LLM tools such as livestock condition scoring, fodder availability determination, rainfall monitoring, and veld (rangeland biodiversity) condition including bush density assessment.

Beautiful Namibia

The week began with an introduction to Gobabeb, which is located in the Namib Naukluft Park and lies next to the ephemeral Kuiseb River, 120 km away from Walvis Bay, at the edge of the majestic Namib Dune Sea.

A midweek field day took the DMP-Botswana team to visit local communities in the Kuiseb River catchment and a short visit to Walvis Bay. The team appreciated, among other things, the spectacularand imposingsand dunes.


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