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Cunca Lolos


Conservation benefit: Support of 12,355 acres of no-take forest

Community benefit: Village freshwater system

Date Approved: 05.2009


This project protects forest, preventing the release of greenhouse gases and reducing erosion that damages coastal and ocean ecosystems.

Cunca Lolos Village was established in 2001 as a farming settlement and has a population of just 152 people. It is one of 27 villages located around the 63,738-acre Mbeliling Forest. A fresh water project for the village was completed in 2006, but unfortunately the water was sulfuric and not suitable for drinking. Pipes from the old project are intact, and people still use the water for irrigation, and to wash their hands and feet after working in the fields.

Villagers must hand-carry water for cooking and drinking from a river more than a half mile away from the village. Each round trip takes about 45 minutes by foot and requires crossing the busy Trans-Flores highway. This poses a considerable risk to the children who collect water for their families.

Since 2007, the villagers have played a major role in monitoring the condition of the forest and in planting trees around the water spring. Birdlife Indonesia is drafting an agreement, with the involvement of all 27 villages around the Mbeliling Forest, that will set out the rules of the protected forest.

In support of the village’s role in protecting 12,355 acres of forest as a strict no-take zone for 10 years, Seacology will fund a village fresh water system. The villagers have identified an abundant and clean spring just over a mile from the village within Mbeliling Forest.

Project Updates

January 2011

This project was completed in February 2010. The infrastructure was handed over on February 13, 2010 to the Cunca Lolos community. Seacology Field Representative Arnaz Mehta and Program Manager Karen Peterson visited the project in October 2010. In December 2010, the villagers, along with those from Benteng Dewa, planted 20,000 native trees within the Mbeliling Forest in areas that had been critically damaged by mudslides.

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June 2010

Arnaz reports that the infrastructure was completed and handed over on February 13, 2010 to the Cunca Lolos community. The village has also planted the following trees in the village tree farm area: 4,437 mahogany seedlings; 130 Saingon seedlings; 387 Ampupu seedlings and 68 Waru seedlings. Cash crop seedlings, such as durian, citrus, sweet potato, jackfruit, mango, and betel nut, were also planted.

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December 2009

All materials, including the pipe, have been delivered to the village. Construction of the water tanks will begin by the end of the year.

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November 2009

Field representative Arnaz Mehta reports that the community is still waiting for an order of specialized pipe to be imported from Surabaya. The pipe is not sold in Labuan Bajo or in the nearest town of Shikara because it is very rarely used by the public as it is relatively expensive and high quality. According to the supplier in Labuan Bajo, all the pipes should arrive this month. As well as ordering the pipe, the community has purchased rebar, sand and cement for the manufacture of the water tanks. As soon as the pipes arrive the focus of work will be on building the concrete water tanks and installing the pipeline. Conservation efforts continue to be encouraged in the form of a village tree farm and regular patrol of the forest. The village tree farm is located outside of the protected area and is focused on multi-use trees that can be used for the construction of houses for food, such as durian trees. This is in anticipation of the villagers not being able to use trees in the protected area for at least 10 years. The village has planted 800 clove tree saplings, 2,500 mahogany saplings and 5,000 seedlings of other local plants.

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