BOS+ IN ACTION - WHAT WE DO
Many rural communities in the South largely depend on the ecosystem in which they live for their livelihood. Many rural populations live off agriculture, livestock, hunting, fishing or collecting fruits… As a result of population pressure and social change (economy, globalisation...) the pressure on these ecosystems increases. Ecosystems often degrade because of the pressure on the carrying capacity: fields and meadows where the soil is completely depleted, forests that are cut clean, rivers that are overfished... Ecosystems are becoming more fragile. The people who live there are getting more vulnerable and go down a negative spiral where they cannot get out of on their own since they do not have the necessary capital (human, natural, social, physical and/or economic). Usually there are two options: 1) They continue to farm in increasingly difficult circumstances; 2) They migrate to the cities in the hope of a better future. Both options usually lead to the same result: increasing poverty.
BOS+ WANTS CHANGE
BOS+ wants to break the vicious cycle of increasing poverty and progressive loss of the ecosystem, where many rural communities have become entangled in and cannot get out of on their own. BOS+ wants to maintain and restore the resilience of ecosystems and local communities. I.e. BOS+ wants to initiate sustainable development for communities whose ecosystem is degraded or is downgrading due to internal and external pressure. This as to recover and conserve the natural resources of the ecosystem in question, and reach a sustainable management.
In an increasingly globalised world the behaviour of the North has an impact on the South and vice versa. BOS+ does not only dwell on the outline of the problems but also reflects on possible solutions. For example encouraging consumption and production awareness for individuals and companies, mobilising governments to realise their commitments and inciting clear interventions within the NGO sector on the environment and climate.
BOS+ is aware that in poor local populations the conservation, management and restoration of natural resources are not their main priorities, but issues such as poverty reduction, health, education... are. Yet BOS+ is convinced that in achieving genuine and sustainable development the ecological aspect is crucial. There are many ways to achieve this sustainable balance in the South. Therefore BOS+, together with local partners and beneficiary local communities, looks for solutions to synergise socio-economic development with the restoration, management and preservation of their ecosystem. BOS+ is active in the following sectors:
- Forestry; more specifically the conservation, management and recovery of forests to achieve a win-win-win situation: a social, climate and biodiversity win.
- Agriculture; more specifically sustainable, organic and agro-ecological farming, with particular attention to agroforestry
- Water; more specifically integrated water management at the level of micro and sub-basin
- Environment; more specifically a development model with an integrated ecosystem
- Strengthening society; more specifically in terms of conservation, management and restoration of the ecosystem in the area of intervention (but also further)
HOW IS BOS+ WORKING TOWARDS MORE AND BETTER FORESTS?
BOS+ builds expertise around forest, trees and development in close dialogue with national and international research institutions, and expands its network further in terms of exchanging expertise and joint actions around more and better forests.
1. BOS+ focuses on actions on grounds with a dual purpose: local sustainable development and conservation, management and/or restoration of forests;
2. BOS+ focuses on strengthening the capacity of forestry managers who live in the relevant forest areas or their buffer zones so that they can guarantee the future of their natural resources;
3. BOS+ offers a unique educational program to the government, civil society organisations, businesses, schools that contributes to an understanding of international issues in regards to natural resources and encourages a change of attitude;
4. BOS+ raises awareness and mobilises the public and focus groups about the social importance of trees and forests, and offers them the opportunity to engage in creating more and better forests; and
5. By means of an active press and media policy, BOS + brings its analyses, positions and requirements to the attention of policy makers and public opinion and supports the appreciation of trees and forest.