OUR NURSERIES AND TEAM MEMBERS

Chris Badger
Chris is the owner of Central African Wilderness Safaris, operating bespoke tours throughout Malawi. Chris recalls his first safari in Malawi in 1987 when the road from Dwangwa to Nkhata Bay was a simple dirt track and the canopy of trees either side of the road actually formed a tunnel, necessitating vehicle headlights during daylight hours. The forest lasted more or less uninterrupted for over 100 kms.

Since that time the devastating and accelerating pace of deforestation in Malawi is notable and led to the initial motivation behind the project to simply grow more trees in an area where they were fast disappearing. Chris understood the need for the communities to be actively involved with the vision of the project and to understand the purpose behind the reforestation; without this understanding any tree planting project in Malawi is often on the back foot before the first tree has been planted.

As the project grew, Chris recognised that lessons were being learnt on both sides, from the community as well as from Root to Fruit. Significantly, there was the lesson of proving that trees are of more benefit to the community standing up than cut down! However, the long term effects of deforestation are often eclipsed by the short term need to put food on the table.

The success of Root to Fruit is the link that enables the communities to value the long term benefits of their trees in the ground; binding together the soil that washes away the field, that fruits can generate income and that shade provides continuous respite and relief from the hot sun. The communities are after all the ones that can ensure they stay standing.

Simultaneously, our international guests can offset the carbon footprint of their travels in support of a project that we truly can see is supporting the livelihoods of local Malawians whilst improving the local and global environment.

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Charles Mankokwe

General Manager

Born and raised in Zimbabwe I’ve always wished to contribute something to my ancestral home Malawi, so I had to track down back home in 1995 from Zimbabwe and got trained in Forestry, Rural and Community Development.

Through my 21 years working in the civil service and different non governmental organisations in the area of Environment and Natural Resources I had wished to give back to the community what I have accomplished with other projects and had always thought of establishing a tree nursery to raise and distribute tree seedlings, as Martin Luther King once said ‘Life’s most persistent and urgent question is what are you doing for others,’ little did I know that Root to Fruit was doing the same.

The moment I learnt that Root to Fruit wanted someone to lead the existing team towards achieving more in its project I wasted no time to take up the opportunity and to fulfill part of what I had always thought of over the past years. The project is well aligned with my dream and vision to build a better country with enough natural resources and sustainably utilised to ensure persistent availability of the tree and forestry resources.

Working with Root to Fruit Company with the knowledge and skills I gathered over the years will make a positive contribution in different communities we are working with especially Nkhata Bay which is one of the few districts in Malawi still enjoying the pleasure of having more vegetation cover of trees and forests. This will ensure we safeguard what we already have as we have an old proverb/adage which says ‘Prevention is better than cure’, so for Nkhata Bay which still has more but slowly deteriorating resources obviously the project has a greater positive impact in conserving the already existing resources.

Since I started my position with Root to Fruit one thing I have discovered and can be good for other organisations or departments to learn from is the uniqueness of keeping records and tracking the growth of the trees which were planted dating back to 2012 when the project started. The database developed and the monitoring strategy put in place has helped to achieve the much needed good survival rate of trees which lacks in so many organisations I have worked and usually not because the trees do not exist on the ground but rather tracking them is what is missing and proper documentation in other projects/programs.
Empowering the community by distributing tree seedlings and provision of environmental education is the only sure and simple way of achieving our goal and vision for both the country and company.
‘Together we can make it happen.’

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Master Banda

Operations Manager

Master Banda has been with Root to Fruit since it’s beginning. A retired Forestry Officer, he has a wealth of knowledge about tree species, nursery management and community mobilization.

He has been giving technical advice in the Root to Fruit nurseries and in the tree planting communities since the project began and is fully invested in protecting the existing forests in the Nkhata Bay region as well as facilitating the planting and nurturing of many more trees. His input has been invaluable to the project and he has trained many of the staff up to be equipped with knowledge and skills to perform their roles in raising seedlings and promoting healthy survival rates in our trees.

Chintheche Inn Nursery

This site was the first nursery constructed, originally established by CAWS in 2009.

Adjacent to the nursery, is the Root to Fruit Information Centre, which offers guests a place to explore the issues of deforestation and reforestation in Malawi. This centre also acts as a training space for staff from all three nurseries, as well as the starting point for guest tours.

The Chintheche Inn Nursery is located within the grounds of Chintheche Inn: a serene, lakeside lodge run by Central African Wilderness Safaris (CAWS).

Our Team Members – Chintheche Inn Nursery
SIMON BANDA

SIMON BANDA

Foreman

Khumbo Ainani

Khumbo Ainani

Nursery Assistant

Kondwani Kayira

Kondwani Kayira

Nursery Assistant

Taonga Kaunda

Taonga Kaunda

Nursery Assistant

Donias Gondwe

Donias Gondwe

Nursery Assistant

Amos Nursery

Amos Nursery is located in the community of Dongo Lituwa, which translates to “white soil” in the local language of Chitonga. The name “Amos” was chosen in honor of the previous owner of the land on which the nursery was built.

It is a triangular-shaped piece of land, bordered on two sides by streams, which provide us with a reliable water source.

Our Team Members – Amos Nursery
LUCIUS MVEYA

LUCIUS MVEYA

Foreman

Goodwell Manda

Goodwell Manda

Nursery Assistant

Margaret Mwale

Margaret Mwale

Nursery Assistant

Mike Chibondwe

Mike Chibondwe

Nursery Assistant

Mazembe Nursery

Mazembe Nursery is located in the community of Mazembe, just 5 minutes south of the popular tourist destination of Kande. The nursery is 15 x 22 metres, and is nestled between the Mazembe River and the M5 Highway, making it the perfect location for travelers to stop by and learn about reforestation efforts in Malawi.

There are plans to build an information centre on site an interactive learning environment for schools, tourists, and local community members.

Our Team Members – Mazembe Nursery
Jonathan Mwenda

Jonathan Mwenda

Foreman

Mavuto Mwale

Mavuto Mwale

Nursery Assistant

Santhe Phiri

Santhe Phiri

Community Mobilizer

Levi Theu

Levi Theu

Community Mobilizer

Mese Mwale

Mese Mwale

Nursery Assistant

MALAWI

Our main office is within the beautiful grounds of Chintheche Inn, located just 40 minutes south of Nkhata Bay, in the Northern Region of Malawi.

Postal

Root to Fruit Ltd.
C/O Chintheche Inn
P.O. Box 9
Chintheche, Nkhata Bay,
MALAWI

Phone

+265 11 193 1045

EUROPE

Our European office is situated in the city centers of Göteborg, Sweden

Postal

Root to Fruit AB
Ostindiefararen 46
417 65 GÖTEBORG
SWEDEN

General questions

info@roottofruit.net