‘Refugees and Restoration’ roundtable

Land restoration in refugee camps and wider communities has enormous potential to enhance the living conditions of forcibly displaced people and the ecosystems of war-torn regions.

To coincide with the official launch of the UN Decade of Ecosystem Restoration and World Environment Day on 5 June 2021, we were delighted to take part in a ‘Refugees and Restoration’ roundtable hosted by Tina Teucher.

Our Operations and Communications Director, Jennie Spears, joined 10 other speakers from regenerative projects, refugee organisations and funders to discuss why and how environmental and social problems can be solved collaboratively. Specifically:

  • What if we transformed refugee camps into regenerative camps, for the people’s health, wealth and peace, for the ecosystem’s regeneration? 
    • Why are regenerative practices a good idea for refugee camps? 
    •  What is needed to establish restoration projects in refugee camps?
    • How can projects multiply, speed up and scale?

In our experience at the Lemon Tree Trust, refugees and internally displaced people (IDPs) want to engage in meaningful work just like any other human being – they do not need encouragement or motivation, but merely tools and education to get started.

That’s why our gardening projects, such as our annual home garden competitions, have not been set up with the primary objective of ecosystem restoration, but rather to help improve people’s mental health.

Gardening in this sense may be perceived as a powerful therapeutic tool, used to learn to cope with isolation, overcome traumatic experiences, and along the way, it produces beauty, belonging and food security.

Read the article summarising the roundtables

Refugees & Restoration: What if we transform refugee camps into regenerative camps?

Watch the recordings of the roundtable

Jennie speaks about the Lemon Tree Trust in session 1 at 33:30.

Session 1 Roundtable: Refugees and Restoration

Session 2 Roundtable: Refugees & Restoration

 

We have awarded prizes to 72 winning gardens in our 2021 Lemon Tree Trust (LTT) annual garden competitions. LTT competitions took place in a record nine camps in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI), despite ongoing Covid-19 restrictions. Winners have received cash prizes and gifts of seeds and plants, and all participants have received certificates.  … Continued

Land restoration in refugee camps and wider communities has enormous potential to enhance the living conditions of forcibly displaced people and the ecosystems of war-torn regions. To coincide with the official launch of the UN Decade of Ecosystem Restoration and World Environment Day on 5 June 2021, we were delighted to take part in a ‘Refugees and Restoration’ roundtable … Continued

Ahmed Ibrahim Ismail lives in the Azar neighbourhood of Domiz 2 camp. “I have a humble garden in my house, and I started working on it with my children two years ago. We have spent many good times in it, especially during the curfew for the coronavirus.⁣  ⁣“My garden contains 20 different types of roses and … Continued