Congratulations to SAVE THE FROGS! Ghana Executive Director Gilbert Adum for winning another grant award from the prestigious Whitley Fund for Nature. With this award of £70,000 (USD $89,894), Gilbert and his team will advocate for a substantial portion of the Sui River Forest Reserve to be designated as a Globally Significant Biodiversity Area (GSBA). Sui is the last home of the critically endangered Giant Squeaker Frog (Arthroleptis krokosua). The SAVE THE FROGS! team will also engage the local community with habitat restoration programs and continue training villagers in beekeeping as an alternative livelihood to previous jobs that negatively impacted the forest.
The goal of acquiring GSBA status for part of Sui River Forest Reserve is to gain stricter government protection, outlawing all forms of destructive activities (especially logging) from the Giant Squeaker Frog's critical habitats. The GSBA listing is equivalent to the IUCN's Category IV status.
This intervention should ensure that the Giant Squeaker Frog (one of the world’s most threatened frog species) does not get added to the global list of ‘lost’ amphibians. Achieving a GSBA status will further help to deliver more sustainable and diversified livelihoods for local communities and to tighten protection for all the forest's inhabitants, not just amphibians.
Gilbert Adum's 2016 Whitley Award
Gilbert’s conservation efforts on his 2016 Whitley Award are already paying off:
- Beekeeping, developed as an alternative livelihood, has significantly increased household incomes; it also virtually replaced wild honey hunting in the area, evidenced by a significant reduction in forest fires.
- The Sui Amphibian Conservation Education Centre (SACEC) that was also established with the same funding has significantly improved children’s level of knowledge of the environment, reading and writing skills and computer literacy.
- The school that houses SACEC (Yawkrom Junior High) recently rose from obscurity to beat off tough competition to become one of the best schools in a national exam (BECE). Just last month, SAVE THE FROGS! Ghana Young Scholar Charity Nyarko excelled at West African regional examinations with A1 in Mathematics, making history in the area.
SAVE THE FROGS! is grateful to the Whitley Fund for Nature for the grant award. More support from other funding agencies, ‘green’ companies and individuals like YOU will be crucial and timely to expedite our efforts on behalf of Ghana's people and wildlife.