Tanzania: Forest Restoration in the Shinyanga Region

Tanzania: Forest Restoration in the Shinyanga Region


In the Shinyanga Region of Tanzania, deforestation, bush clearing, and overgrazing have been persistent problems. The government of Tanzania recognized the traditional ngitili system of land management as a potential solution. 

Goals & Approach

The goal of this project was to improve natural resources management and facilitate the recovery of degraded forestlands by revitalizing the traditional ngitili system, which is an indigenous natural resources management system. Traditionally, ngiliti was used to provide fodder for livestock. Vegetation and trees are nurtured on fallow lands during the wet season to provide livestock fodder supplies in the dry season. HASHI field officers used residual natural seed and rootstock to restore ngitili enclosures in many villages. In others, active tree planting, first planting with exotic species, later with indigenous tree species preferred by local people, especially around homesteads.

Reported Takeaways

18 years into the project, at least 350,000ha of ngiliti had been restored in 833 villages. Of the 350,000ha restored roughly half of this is owned by groups and the other half by individuals. In summary, the HASHI project has been successful in restoring degraded lands in this region and generating substantial benefits to locals. This suggests the importance of traditional knowledge combined with modern knowledge. On the other hand some problems identified by the HASHI project are insecure land tenure discouraging regeneration and inequitable distribution of benefits.


“Restoration Resource Center Tanzania: Forest Restoration in the Shinyanga Region.” Accessed June 11, 2020.


  • The World Reosurces Institute, Washington, DC
  • Shinyanga Soil Conservation Programme