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Zeitz Foundation

2021-22 Donation: $100,000
Donations to Date: $300,000

The ZEITZ foundation (ZF) develops and implements socially and ecologically responsible projects in the Laikipia region of Kenya. Our donation will enable ZF to continue with their Tree of Life Initiative and continue planting over one million trees, secure sustainable water access for the region, and provide an alternative income stream to livestock and related overgrazing and deforestation through their vocational training academy for forestry and permaculture.

Why They're Climate Smart

Over the last decade, Kenya has lost much of its forested land. The effects of this deforestation contribute directly to climate change, affecting not only the biodiversity of plant and animal life but also the well-being of the communities who rely on the land. It's a vicious cycle resulting in more hunger, increased land degradation, more destructive agricultural activities (like the expansion of cattle farming), and less stability.

ZF's Tree of Life initiative combines women's education and vocational training with reforestation, conservation, and biodiversity.  In so doing, ZF offers women an opportunity for independent incomes and financial freedom while reforesting over 1,000,000 acacia trees (250,000 by the end of 2021) – regenerating the landscape, enhancing soil stabilization and fertility, recapturing water, and ensuring the survival of a biodiverse ecosystem.

This initiative follows ZF's sustainable "4C" approach — combining conservation, community, culture, and commerce — a philosophy which is shared globally through The Long Run network.

Why they Receive Our Continued Support

After two years of funding, ZF has had outstanding results. They created a nursery; sourced, germinated and planted over 250,000 acacia seedlings; sunk a borehole to create new water access; and installed a solar pump, panels, storage tanks, and other plumbing works to generate up to 40,000 liters of water a day for the land, wildlife, and their newly established nursery.

With this year's funding, ZF will build a 50-acre water dam that will ensure water security in the area, germinate another 50,000 trees for planting in spring 2022, support their female ranger unit (which protects the lands from illegal encroachment as well as poachers), and launch their new Vocational Training Academy for Forestry and Permaculture.

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