Russell Ndumba is BCP’s 2015 Carey Eaton Award Winner

 “Working for BCP has been a remarkable experience but winning the Carey Eaton Award is unbelievable. This award has motivated me to work extra hard; as you know it embodies the values of BCP as a company and I am proud to be a reflection of those values,” Russell Ndumba.

Mr. Russell Ndumba, BioCarbon Partners (BCP) Senior Finance and Admin Officer, has become the second recipient of the Carey Eaton Award. Mr. Ndumba was nominated for the award by a majority number of his BCP colleagues, and is granted this award with full support from the BCP Board of Directors.

Mr. Ndumba joined BCP in 2014 and has so far spent more than a year and half as a company finance officer. His role has evolved with the expansion of the company. Initially, his role involved providing financial and administrative support to the Lusaka office, but he now leads the finance and administration team in Mfuwe, Mambwe District, where the company has opened a third office.

BCP’s Senior Finance and Administration Officer, Russell Ndumba. Mr. Ndumba is BCP’s second recipient of the Carey Eaton Award.

BCP’s Senior Finance and Admin Officer, Russell Ndumba. Mr. Ndumba is BCP’s second recipient of the Carey Eaton Award.

This experience has had a profound effect on Mr. Ndumba, although as he explains: “My priorities have not changed at all. I was employed to support the team in the best way possible. I still do this but my scope has changed. I depended on people like Clara for procurement when I was in Lusaka, but now I have to be the ‘Clara’ for Mfuwe. I have also become the Moses and Bwalya for Mfuwe. This has made me appreciate the efforts of the finance and administrative team.”

The Carey Eaton Mission Award is intended to recognize an outstanding BCP employee up to twice a year, for demonstrating the values of BCP and embodying the spirit of Mr. Carey Eaton.  Mr. Eaton was well loved and highly valued Advisor to BCP, who played a key role in the start-up of the organization, until his untimely death in June of 2014.  The award was initiated in October 2014, in honour of Mr. Eaton, and is expected to continue to be awarded to outstanding members of the BCP team.

Reflecting on his receipt of the award, Mr. Ndumba said: “It will probably be a lie if I said that I expected to win this award. BCP has remarkable staff members who are also very good team players. These are individuals who work hard to achieve organizational goals. I have learned to be a self-motivated individual over the years. Winning the award was like adding a cherry on top of a cake. It made me aware that even finance and administration is recognized at BCP. This indeed motivated me further. This makes me very proud and also motivates me to work extra hard and give back to the company.”

The Legacy of Mr. Carey Eaton

Mr. Carey Eaton was a BCP Advisor from the beginning. He was born in Zambia, grew up in Kenya, and he was globally recognized as a technology pioneer in Africa.  Prior to the inception of BCP, Mr. Eaton held the position of CIO in a publicly traded Australian company. He then took a risk and returned to Kenya, where he started a group of linked technology firms that soon created 600 jobs in multiple companies, built African capacity and improved markets through the mantra that “technology is the great equalizer”.

When BCP was launched in 2012, Mr. Eaton became an Advisor who volunteered extensive time and expertise to support BCP through the rigors of the start-up phase and during the development of the company. BCP is here today thanks to his support.

In June 2014, Mr. Eaton tragically passed following a violent crime in Nairobi, Kenya. He is survived by his wife and four young children.

The Carey Eaton Mission Award was launched in his honour in October 2014, and is intended to recognize BCP staff members who embody the values, commitment and spirit that Mr. Eaton brought to the start-up phase of the company.  Mr. Eaton was committed to African economic development, capacity building, teamwork, mentorship, humility and hard work. In spite of his success, he made time to coach aspiring African tech entrepreneurs. He was generous, energetic, a strategic thinker, fun, and focused. The Carey Eaton Mission Award is as much a recognition of good character, as it is recognition of actions that contribute to the overall BCP Team.

 

This blog is made possible by the support of the American People through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The content of this blog are the sole responsibility of BCP and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.

 

 

Supporting Conservation Management through IT: Lower Zambezi Regional Management Unit Receives Donation of Six Computers

The quest to fight climate change through reduced deforestation and forest degradation cannot be a success without concerted efforts from both policy makers and other relevant stakeholders. More importantly, there is an urgent need for developing the capacity of relevant institutions mandated to protect biodiversity.

BCP’s CFP representative and ZAWA officials during the handover of six computers to ZAWA. BCP has been instrumental in providing financial and technical support to the ZAWA through the USAID funded CFP

CFP Chief of Party, Paul Cowles shakes hands with ZAWA Director Conservation and Management James Milanzi during the handover of six computers to ZAWA. BCP has been instrumental in providing financial and technical support to ZAWA through the USAID funded CFP

In Zambia, the USAID funded Community Forests Program (CFP) being implemented by BCP is already yielding positive results in strengthening the already existing relationship between BCP and government agencies such as the Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA).

BCP continues to offer both financial and technical support to the Zambia Wildlife Authority through the CFP. “ZAWA is a very close partner of BCP in the implementation of the CFP. It is a critical partner particularly for law enforcement. We have village scouts that we support through the Community Resource Board (CRB) of Mpanshya and ZAWA is the coordinating institution of these scouts. Consequently, their participation in the CFP is critical to moving forward with our objectives of successfully implementing REDD+ in these areas,” explains BCP’s CFP Chief of Party, Paul Cowles.

The CFP recently donated six computers (3 laptops and 3 desktops) to the authority. “Capacity reinforcement remains a very important aspect of our work, especially for implementing partners. While ZAWA is very strong technically there is a need for more IT equipment in regional headquarters offices, like Chongwe. The Chongwe office is a very important support center for conservation in the entire Lower Zambezi ecosystem area in Zambia, including the Rufunsa area in which BCP works. We sincerely hope this gesture helps to reinforce their important work,” stated Mr.Cowles.

BCP is already looking for other ways of supporting ZAWA. “We are looking at supporting ZAWA through the rehabilitation of Mukamba Gate where ZAWA has offices and also rehabilitation of housing for ZAWA staff members. We are hoping these works will allow the area to become one of ZAWA’s major operational sites as an important entry point to Lower Zambezi National Park and close to Rufunsa Conservancy, ultimately leading to better protection of resources.”

This blog is made possible by the support of the American People through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The content of this blog are the sole responsibility of BCP and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.

BCP and COMACO target Rufunsa for Conservation Farming expansion and market linkages

Improving community livelihoods has become a very important prerequisite in sustainable forest management. In Zambia, several non-governmental organizations are working tirelessly to improve community livelihoods with the hope of reducing deforestation and forest degradation.

COMACO and BCP Lead Farmers during a Conservation Farming training in Rufunsa District. Lead Farmers were exposed to the theoretic and practical ways of implementing Conservation Farming

COMACO and BCP Lead Farmers during a Conservation Farming training in Rufunsa District. Lead Farmers were exposed to the theoretic and practical ways of implementing Conservation Farming

BCP, through it’s USAID funded CFP project, has partnered with the Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) to extend its conservation-minded livelihoods initiatives to its project area for households around Rufunsa Conservancy.

“We are here in Rufunsa through a good partnership that exists between us and BCP who are currently implementing a REDD+ project in this area,” explains Lloyd Mambwe, COMACO area Manager for Rufunsa.

COMACO is an agri-business company that targets small scale farmers across large rural landscapes providing markets, skills and incentives to help farmers sustain a better life from their land, to adapt to climate change and reduce drivers and primary causes of deforestation and soil degradation. COMACO has pioneered building commercial links between small-scale farmers and conservation and currently works with about 100,000 farmers across Luangwa Valley ecosystem.

The beginning of this long term relationship started with a series of initial meetings in mid-August in all four project zones to identify participating farmers and select Lead Farmers.”This training has brought together our lead farmers and BCP’s lead farmers from Bunda Bunda chiefdom from areas surrounding BCP’s REDD+ Project Zone and introduce them to the extension part of the COMACO model and Sustainable Agricultural farming practices such as Conservation Agriculture and Composting,” explains Mr. Mambwe.

The meetings also provided an opportunity for knowledge sharing among various stakeholders from the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, COMACO and how these institutions could help the new farmers in Bunda-Bunda achieve results to support both their livelihoods and conservation of their natural resources.Following these initial community meetings and farmer selection in August, 16 Lead Farmers from all four zones were trained by COMACO in conservation farming on September 17th – 18th at Kaunga Agriculture Training Centre (KATC).

COMACO and BCP Lead Farmers during a Conservation Farming training in Rufunsa District

COMACO and BCP Lead Farmers during a Conservation Farming training in Rufunsa District

The purpose of the training was to introduce the farmers to the COMACO conservation farming model intervention and associated value chain.

Each Lead Farmer was asked to recruit a total of sixty farmers from their respective areas. COMACO and BCP hope  to roll out its entire model in the Lower Zambezi REDD+ Project(LZRP) Zone as part of the USAID funded Community Forests Program(CFP) over the next three (3) years;  intensifying production and linking farmers to markets through the It’s Wild! Brand, focusing especially on honey, groundnuts, and possibly village chicken production. A grant agreement between BCP and COMACO funding this program has been forwarded to USAID for approval.