Located in Morocco’s Atlas Mountains, Oukaimeden is a natural and cultural heritage and a repository of immeasurable history. For generations, the Agdal of Oukaimeden has been preserved by the Berber transhumant tribes wherein the area is closed for 5 months yearly to allow land and species regeneration. It is the key source of community livelihoods and its governance system is anchored on cultural and spiritual traditions.
Oukaimeden is also popularly known for hosting Morocco’s main ski resort as well as evoking beautiful landscapes for hikers, mountain bikers and astronomy enthusiasts. As private sector development projects continue to expand in the area, there is now a declining trend on the use of traditional knowledge and indigenous conservation measures, and thus, posing a risk for social fragmentation and environmental degradation. Additionally, migration and climate change impacts exacerbate these challenges.
As such, the ICCA-GSI project Amenagour: Projet de soutin a la reconnaissance et a la preservation de L’APAC OUKAIMEDEN, Agdal de L’Oukaimeden, gigantesque reservoir de la biodiversite du haut Atlas focuses on the self-strengthening and revitalizing of the Berber communities to mitigate risks of the declining use of traditional practices and its associated environmental degradation. Core components of the project include (i.) participatory engagement in reinforcing traditional knowledge and practices, with a heavy focus on younger generations;(ii) advocacy and awareness-raising on "transhumant pastoralism" practices to safeguard ecosystems and preserve the cultural heritage, and (iii.) protection of traditional knowledge through documentation.