Highlights of Some Major Achievements under Pastoralist Program in 2015


Jane Alphonce Mkinga, (TNRF), February, 2016.


Pastoralist Programme (PP) is a five year programme (2012-2016) managed and implemented in partnership by Tanzania Natural Resources Forum (TNRF and Care and funded by Irish Aid). The programme is implemented through registered Tanzania civil society organizations (CSO's) or/and community  based organizations( CBO's) that work to improve the capacity of communities to overcome poverty, reduce vulnerability and strengthen the rights  of pastoralist men and women for sustainable livelihoods. TNRF roles in this programme is to provide technical support, communication, enabling and coordinate advocacy at national level; while Care’s role is managing grant mechanisms for these CSOs, overall coordination, and reporting.

The programme is designed to realize the following outcomes: 1) Improved policies and laws that respond to the needs and demands of pastoralists’ men and women; 2) Increased responsiveness of National Government Agencies and LGAs to deliver quality veterinary and extension services to pastoralists; 3)  Improved national and local CSOs service delivery in addressing pastoralists’ men and women practical and strategic needs; 4) Increased adoption of climate adaptation and mitigation strategies and/or practices among pastoralist men and women; and 5) Increased participation of pastoral women in decision making processes and ownership and control of land and cattle in the program area. This brief addresses the some of the key achievements of the program for the year 2015 in accordance to some outcomes of the program.

Some of the major achievements in 2015

Increased responsiveness of national government agencies and LGA’s to deliver quality veterinary and extension services to pastoralists: Currently through PP, pastoralist communities have more access to important extension and veterinary services. These are important services required for livestock safety, health and in considering that pastoralism is the basic livelihood system. The program implementation through partners’ intervention in communities has managed to advocate for the provision of these services at district levels. There is also evidence that at local level, disputes over land are being effectively dealt with by the Village Land Tribunals as a result of the program. For instance, through the program interventions at Ayamango village, institutions joined hands with village leaders to protect pastoralist rights on communal land. For example, a famer organized with 44 other individuals to file a case during the 2000s in the Arusha High Court. This initiated a process of litigation which proceeded until 14th September, 2015, when the village won the case and the grazing area was returned to the village government for use by pastoralists as grazing land.

Previously pastoralists witnessed livestock dying because of poor extension and veterinary services.  Awareness raised in the pastoralist communities by the program has enabled the community to demand for their rights. At the moment, there is an improvement of extension services in the program areas specifically in Babati, Hanang and Kiteto i.e on accessibility to extension officers, water sources, and drugs at convenient locations. This is exemplified by pastoralists’ networks advocating for the increase of extension officers and provision of sufficient extension services. Moreover, most communities have extension officers at the ward level. In addition, pastoralists network have community based health workers co-working with extension officers to ensure availability of sustainable extension services.

Increased climate adaptation and mitigation strategies or practices among pastoralist men and women. One among the challenges that faces both farmers and pastoralist is the changing climate.  Inadequate knowledge on systematic adaptation to climate change is a challenge to pastoralist’s development. The change in climate element such as rainfall and temperature patterns leads to food insecurity and loss of herds. PP imparted climate change adaptation techniques to pastoralists. For instance, in monduli, a council of 700 pastoralist women in pastoralist   communities are currently involved in tree planting in different areas as a method to combat climate change effects.  These women would plant at least 100 trees in each area they visit on monthly basis, mostly at schools.

Pastoralists women are planting tree at Moita Bwawani to protect water sources

Increased participation of pastoral women in decision making processes and ownership and control of land and cattle in the program area. Before programme intervention pastoralists women in pastoralist communities had inadequate social inclusion. . These women had inadequate voice to advocate for rights as characterized with no right practices in owning land, livestock, and inadequate participation in decision making processes. Major issues that made women vulnerable because of inadequate participation were matters pertaining to administration and management of village land and livestock.. Widows couldn't pursue for the rights to own and administer matrimonial land after the death of their spouses. This was due to the ignorance on existing laws that provide such rights and the prevailing customary system. Mr. Sangaine Katongo (pastoralist) form Dibamba village in Mvomero district, testified on how the situation was before PP intervention

“I tell you  the truth, men used to undermine women a lot. We used to make them feel like they can never own anything let alone the land. There for it was brought to their attention that owning land for pastoralist isn’t possible in this community and if it were to be made possible then is definitely not for women. We thought only men would be able to own and manage the land better than women. Land rights were something that women of this community even dreamt of. If it wasn’t for the trainings and the awareness that UMWEMA has brought you would not even see any woman in this gathering because they were inferior.”

Through the training on gender mainstreaming into pastoralism provided by TNRF to partners under this programme, women were made aware of their rights. 980 women were trained on gender issues and  has resulted into others obtaining positions in village councils and women involvement in decision making processes . As the result of PP intervention, among other factors, women own lands as well as livestock and other resources. Women are currently in a much better positions than before in all project areas. Their confidence has generally increased to the extent of participating in general elections by contesting for leadership positions in various levels from village council to members of parliaments.

Improved policies and laws that responds to the needs and demands of pastoralist men and women:TNRF in collaboration with other five (5) national level CSOs supported by the programme have been advocating for laws that address the needs and demands of pastoralists. The activities that have been implemented jointly on advocacy includes meeting with District level officials like District executive directors, Planning officers , Ministry officials and Members of Parliament. The program also facilitated dialogues in various districts and national level on allocation of common grazing areas for pastoralist communities and respect to such common grazing right by other land users. The program has also influenced policy and law makers to change legislation and enact laws that are favorable to pastoralist livelihood including mobility as a way of living for pastoralists.

In dialogue meetings with government actors, the government raised concerns on insufficient areas to allocate for indigenous pastoralist for grazing. . Through consultative dialogues supported by media campaigns the government responded positively by reallocating some areas that were taken by investors back to pastoralists. For example, MILILINGA Farm (Morogoro) was was among  7 farms that was returned by the President to pastoralists in Mvomero district. Grazing area in PAWAGA (Iringa) was returned by the Minister of Natural resources to the pastoralist in the end of 2015.


PP has significantly reduced vulnerability and poverty in pastoralists’ communities in the programme areas. Their situation is improved compared to the past years when there were no interventions of the programme. The living conditions are improved and women are recognized as major contributors to the family and community economy and take part in key decision making at household and community level.  The PP goal  “Reduced poverty and vulnerability for pastoralist men, women and children in Tanzania” is on track of achievement. TNRF will continue to maintain its key role under the programme, which is building the capacity of member organizations to engage in addressing issues affecting pastoralism as the viable livelihood option.