Forests play a vital role in sustaining the planet’s natural capital. They play a key role in the Earth’s water cycle as they provide watershed protection and prevent soil erosion, as well as balance out global warming by acting out as carbon sinks. These forest ecosystems serve as habitats to a wide array of plant and animal species. Furthermore, forests serve as homes to many indigenous communities in Asia. For these communities, their connection to forests is natural and beyond the physical.
Today, these forests have been nothing short of provident that almost everything is directly or indirectly related to forests – from the products we use, up to the activities that we do. However, the global forest cover has continually been on a decline over the past decades due to human-caused exploitive activities, and
Working with communities towards a balanced use and management of non-timber forest products (NTFPs) not only nourishes their organic connections with the forests, but can also provide a strong incentive for involvement in forest conservation through basic livelihoods to provide for their needs.