Joint Forest Management - Rejuvenating Community Forests

Meghalaya joined the rest of the country when it notified the constitution of Forest Development Agency and application of the Joint Forest Management principles on 9th September 2003.  The Forest & Environment Dept registered 7 F.D.As constituted in 7 (seven) Social Forestry Divisions covering all the districts of the State. The Joint Forest Management Committees formed by respective F.D.As have been registered by the concerned Conservator of Forests (Social Forestry).

Joint Forest Management is a concept of developing partnership between Forest Department and fringe forest user groups on the basis of jointly defined roles and responsibilities for afforestation of degraded community forests.

Joint Forest Management provides visible role to the local communities in planning, management and protection of community forests and  gives them a share in the benefit from these forests.

The National Afforestation and Eco-Development Board approved proposal worth Rupees 12 Crores submitted by the seven F.D.As for implementation of National Afforestation Programme in Meghalaya for an area of 7400 Ha. during the 10th five year plan (2002-2007) through 73 Joint Forest Management Committees. The F.D.As have received Rs 2.45 Crores as first  and Rs 5.18 Crores as second installment of funds from the N.A.E.B. on 14th June 2004 and June 2005 respectively.

The effective implementation of the programme by the J.F.M.C.s will go a long way towards generating gainful employment opportunities for rural people, reducing the incidence of poverty, and subsequently leading to higher level of income and employment. Hence people's participation combined with empowerment is a key to sustainable management of natural resources which is one of the strongest means of development for masses.

Degraded community forest land site for afforestation at Jirang Umsohpanan
Degraded community forest land site for afforestation at Jirang Umsohpanan J.F.M.C., Ri-Bhoi District

Seedlings raised by the J.F.M.C. for afforestation of degraded forests
Seedlings raised by the J.F.M.C. for afforestation of degraded forests

Water Conservation Pond Constructed by J.F.M.C
Water Conservation Pond Constructed by J.F.M.C.