Africa Great Lakes

ARCOS and its partners are working together through collaborative actions to address major issues affecting freshwater services in the region. Through support to civil society actors, we conduct activities that encourage sustainable water services, land management and farming practices as well as community ecotourism in a bid to achieve integrated water resources management of the freshwater resources in the region.

The Africa Great Lakes region is composed of five basins namely the Lake Victoria basin, Lake Tanganyika basin, Lake Malawi basin, Lake Turkana basin, and the Upper Nile basin. The region straddles eleven countries (Ethiopia, South Sudan, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique) and is known to be one of the population centre of the continent.

Given the fact that many families are poor and therefore rely heavily on natural resources to derive their livelihoods from the natural ecosystems in this region including freshwater ecosystems. The later are submitted to an increasing pressure through overuse of resources (e.g. overfishing) which leads to progressive degradation of the ecosystems and habitat loss for many species they host. Freshwater habitats and the ecosystem services they provide play a significant role for biodiversity conservation and human well-being. Despite their value and importance, many lakes, rivers, and wetlands in the Africa Great Lakes region are being severely degraded by human activities and are declining at a much faster rate than terrestrial ecosystems. Non-sustainable exploitation of freshwater resources is a primary cause of various issues such as soil erosion and sedimentation, pollution, conflicts and inefficient water allocation and use. Given the large numbers of vulnerable people and the high level of threats to the ecosystems of the Africa Great Lakes region, this region is regarded as a conservation hotspot by many conservation stakeholders and increased effort is being directed towards understanding the drivers of change and ways to address threats affecting freshwater ecosystem in this region.

ARCOS and its partners are working together through collaborative actions to address major issues affecting freshwater services in the region. Through support to civil society actors, we conduct activities that encourage sustainable water services, land management and farming practices as well as community ecotourism in a bid to achieve integrated water resources management of the freshwater resources in the region.

ARCOS Portal has a component on Africa Great Lakes, to allow stakeholders track the progress towards the achievements along various conservation targets that have been set as well as allow policy makers and the public get accurate and well-structured information on the status of habitats, species and ecosystem services in this region.

Download ARCOS Great Lakes Programme flyer here