Contact Address Details:
and Development Group (GEPADG)
PO Box 21, Banjul
Head office, Kombo South
The Gambia, West Africa
Tel no: +220 4486001
8800986 / 6399407
7679627 / 3453232
GEPADG, in Gambia, is a voluntary, community based organisation
which was established in Banjul in 1992 following the challenge
laid down by UN's Agenda 21 encouraging local governments
and communities to implement the concept of sustainable development
by developing their own
It is a non-profit, grassroots organisation located in the
village of Gunjur which is on the Atlantic coast of southern
The goals of the Gunjur Environmental Protection and Development
Group is to deliver long-lasting, sustainable schemes to tackle
poverty by preventing deforestation and the degradation of
coastal ecosystems and mangroves. It focuses on improving
the livelihoods of rural people, community re-forestation
initiatives, eco-tourism development, micro-financing, agro-forestry
and vegetable gardening for local women.
To achieve these ends GEPADG understood that it needed the
broader participation of the community with regards to conservation
and natural resources management. As a result the first ever
conference of its kind was held in February, 1998 at the grassroots
level attended by relevant stakeholders.
One of their most prominent programmes is the integrated coastal
and marine biodiversity management (ICAM) project which was
funded by the WWF and the Global Environment Facility (GEF)
/ World Bank Group.
• Advocating for an expansion of sustainable modes of development.
• Enhancing community sanitation & health.
• Established the Gambia's pioneering turtle warden.
• Forest management.
• Restoration of the coastal lagoon - Bolonfenyo Community
• Yearly village cleaning day.
• Yearly tree planting exercises.
GEPADG has already begun the work of conserving and restoring
the lagoon with assistance from several international donors.
To oversee and carry out the marine restoration and protection
project the Bolonfenyo Community Wildlife Reserve has employed
the following personnel.
• Executive Director
• Beekeeping supervisor
• Biodiversity Protected Area Officer
• Community Forest officer
• 2 Community Rangers / turtle monitoring & bird watching
• Community Warden, water and sanitation
• Ecotourism Officer
• Environmental Health and Hygiene Officer
• Financial Assistant
• Secretary / PA
• Security guard
• Community ignorance about Bolong Fenyo being a protected
• Gathering of fruits & vegetation relied upon by avi-fauna
• Illegal poaching, palm wine tapping & ad-hoc settlements
• Refuse dumping and pollution
• Surface water shortage affecting waterfowl
• Tree felling for firewood
• Wild bushfires
The staff at the GEPADG headquarters are assisted by the Management
Committee which is made up of the board of trustees, The Gunjur
Project, Village Development Committee (VDC), Council of Elders
and representatives from the nearby villages of Sanyang, Domung,
Gunjur and Kajabang.
Bolonfenyo Community Wildlife Reserve:
The protected coastal marine area and its lagoon was created
in March 2008 as the Gambia's first community wildlife reserve
and covers and area of 320 hectares. The sanctuary has a wide
variety of birds and animals.
It is frequented by at least 75 resident and Afro-Palearctic
migrants, woodland and waterfowl bird species and is an important
bird areas. Birdwatchers can spot the African Spoonbill, Black-headed
Heron, Goliath Heron, Yellow-Crowned Gonolek, Pied Avocets,
Long-tailed Cormorant, White-crowned robin-chats. There are
also Hamerkop, White-faced Whistling Ducks, Grey-headed Kingfisher,
Little Grebe, Northern Shovelers, Common Moorhen, African
Jacana, Black-billed Wood Dove, Lizard Buzzard, Common Teals,
Red-eyed, Vinaceous Dove, Little Stints, terns, gulls
and other avian.
So far 27 reptilian and mammalian species have been listed.
Examples are Bushbuck, spitting cobra, chameleon, Epaulet
fruit bats, Senegal bush baby, laughing / spotted hyena (Crocuta
crocuta), puff adder, western red colobus monkeys, black forest
cobra, African rock python to name but a few.
Just off the Atlantic coastline are humpback dolphins (Sousa
teuszi), mudskippers, several crab species, Mediterranean
monk seal (monadus monadus), green turtles (Chelonia
mydas), upside down jellyfish (Cassiopea) and other
Typical vegetation in the scrub and wooded areas are the African
locust bean, rhun palm, Acacia spp. Wattles, figs and other
types of flora. The Red and White mangroves are important
breeding and feeding grounds for various species of shrimps,
oysters, molluscs and other crustaceans.