Motokai Communal Land Association (CLA), a community-based organization in Budongo Sub-County, Masindi District, Murchison Landscape, Uganda, has achieved a significant milestone towards sustainable forest management by establishing a beekeeping enterprise. This achievement was further strengthened by the non-cash award of €10,000 (UGX 40,000,000) to the group as one of the three winners of the 2021 MoMo4C Call for Green Business Proposals. The grant was awarded to Motokai CLA for their green business proposal to enhance honey production and other bee products in their beekeeping enterprise to sport sustainable forest management and improved livelihoods.

The MoMo4C program is aimed at developing and scaling up landscape programs for climate-resilient agriculture and forestry. The program focuses on developing business cases with communities, public sector, and the private sector, as well as innovative financing models. The 2022 Call for green business proposals invited innovative propositions for developing 10 CLA business plans into full-blown green business cases.

Motokai CLA’s beekeeping business plan was developed after undertaking a business plan development training in 2021, which was funded by the MoMo4C Programme. The group’s plan was considered viable and sustainable, with a focus on protecting their community forest and holding themselves accountable for their actions. The group underwent a Needs Assessment for their business plan in 2022, which identified the need for training in modern beekeeping methods and equipment to boost production and increase profits. On the basis of this assessment, the group submitted a proposal seeking support to enable them to scale up their operations.

In April 2023, ECOTRUST facilitated a partnership between Motokai Communal Land Association (CLA) and The Hive Limited, a prominent beekeeping company in Uganda. This collaboration aimed to provide technical support, modern beekeeping training, market access for bee products, and the necessary equipment to establish a modern apiary. With the help of The Hive Limited, the group successfully installed 70 state-of-the-art beehives in Nyambigoma village, Budongo Sub County, Masindi District. During the two-day installation process, a total of 26 group members, comprising 14 male and 12 female members, actively participated to ensure the transfer of skills to all members. This participatory approach provided an opportunity for enhanced skills and knowledge in beekeeping, benefiting the entire group.

Motokai CLA’s beekeeping enterprise serves as an exemplary demonstration of how partnerships between communities, private sector companies, and NGOs can foster sustainable development. With more than 100 members united by a shared vision of protecting their community forest and promoting sustainable beekeeping practices, the group is making steady progress towards their goal of establishing a profitable and sustainable beekeeping enterprise that benefits both the community and the environment. The MoMo4C program has played an instrumental role in providing the necessary support and funding for such groups to establish sustainable green enterprises, ultimately leading to a more resilient Murchison Landscape.