GDP (US$): 365,400 M$
POPULATION: 3 700 000
The vision of the Welsh Government and Africa programme is to support Wales in becoming a globally responsible nation through building and growing sustainable partnerships in sub-Saharan Africa that support the delivery of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The programme supports dozens of small civil society groups who work with African partners on education, climate change initiatives, livelihoods, health, sport, and culture projects promoting well-being in both Wales and in African communities.
The Mbale Trees is a flagship collaboration initiative of the Welsh Government, the Mount Elgon Tree Growing Enterprise, and partners in the Mbale Region of Eastern Uganda. For over 10 years, and since the programme started, 15 million trees have been distributed. The project seeks to support communities by distributing 3.1 million trees every year–one for every person in Wales–with the ambition of reaching 25 million trees by 2025. It also seeks to engage people of all ages on climate change and the importance of trees and forests as part of the solution.
The programme also supports the Plant! scheme which is now in its 10th year. Plant! celebrates the birth of every child born or adopted in Wales by planting two trees: one in new Welsh woodland and the other, a fruit tree, in Mbale (Uganda). This practice ensures both trees for future generations, while also nurtures a close personal relationship with nature from an early age.
Concerning capacity building, the International Learning Opportunities programme has provided nearly 200 people from Wales with 8-week placements in either Lesotho, Uganda, or Namibia, which have assisted partner organisations with their efforts to deliver aspects of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Participants report gaining considerable confidence and experience whilst also contributing to the delivery of projects with real value.
In recent years, the overall Wales and Africa Programme have offered dozens of small grants to Wales-based organisations with partners in sub-Saharan Africa in support of SDG delivery. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, larger grants have been made available to support various COVID responses.