Joshua Konkankoh is a powerful advocate of the connection between sustainable living, respect for one’s roots and traditions, and empowerment of youth and local communities. Over the past 20 years he has become an authority on the development of ‘ecovillages’ — places that use organic farming techniques to regenerate social and natural environments — in both in his native Cameroon and across the world.
Konkankoh has a long history of working on ecological projecst: In 1985 he set up a community garden for youth entrepreneurship. He founded Better World Cameroon (BWC) in 1996, a charity dedicated to improving the connections between local people and their environment in rural parts of the country, and he is also the person behind Bafut Eco Village Vision2020, a project using permaculture training and organisation development tools to develop new skills, partner with international volunteers and become a community for youth entrepreneurship and women empowerment.
Internationally, he’s worked with the Sieben Linden Ecovillage in Germany and Findhorn Ecovillage in Scotland, and designed water retention landscapes for the Tamera Ecovillage in Portugal. In his current role, Konkankoh expands outreach to increase BWC’s visibility in the world and helps it become financially self-sufficient. Overall, the organisation wants to help rural Africa become more joyous, fruitful, compassionate, and “whole-heartedly African”.
“I am identifying strengths and challenges in upscaling the Bafut Eco village into a Living Biotope for receiving internally displaced youth and refugees, discovering that Regenerative Education is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world,” Konkankoh writes on LinkedIn.
“I am committed to giving voice to youth, women and small-scale farmers, harnessing the potential of eco-entrepreneurship to create a sustainable future in the face of a rising humanitarian crisis.”
Alongside his ecological work, KonKanKoh is focused on the importance of maintaining respect for Africa. In an interview with Terranova voice, he stressed that the continent must not lose its youth “to the western dream”, and expressed concern that barriers between countries effectively mean that progressive projects across Africa hardly know each other. His solution? To connect “the youth of the West and the youth of the developing countries”.Tags: Cameroon, Eco village