The Aegean Forest Foundation is a non-governmental organization which was founded in 1995 with the principle of planting trees, saving forests, and awakening ‘green’ consciousness to be widespread in every part of the society. Since 1995, Aegean Forest Foundation provided more than 9 million of saplings to the forests. Aegean Forest Foundation works to enhance public consciousness through practices and training in order to ensure sustainability, to adapt novel technologies for prevention of forest fires, land degradation, desertification, reclamation of flood basins, climate change; protection of biological diversity, rural development and lower carbon emission; and extension of renewable energy and energy efficiency practices. Aegean Forest Foundation has also been a part of many regional, national, and international projects which are either funded by EU and Ministries in Turkey. It has also been accredited to UNCCD (United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification) during 12th Conference of Parties in 2015.
Aegean Forest Foundation has 40.000 nature enthusiast volunteers and 35 personnel. It also employs local villagers or qualified forest workers for short term in afforestation and all other projects according to project’s qualifications. It provides regular region-wide trainings on creating awareness in decreasing the pressure on ecosystems, protecting nature, and creating environmental consciousness for approximately 25.000 people per year, especially for students, from the perspective of “Life-Long Learning”. The most essential way to decrease negative impacts of mankind on environment is to create awareness through environmental education.
Aegean Forest Foundation provides training on climate change, carbon management, utilization of renewable energy resources, protection of woodland, and energy efficiency at schools in line with the training protocol by Provincial Directorate of National Education. It conducts awareness-raising activities in line with appropriate educational models for target audiences.
The main objective of the Foundation is to enhance the green cover and to enlarge the forest areas by founding re-creation areas and plantation fields. Planning and creating novel forest areas and managing them in line with these plans is essential for the foundation. Foundation cooperates with related ministry according to the property status of the site in afforestation and reforestation projects.
Training is another component of Foundation’s mission. The Foundation organizes training on flood, erosion, and awareness-raising about protection of forests. Aegean Forest Foundation also strives for providing contributions to the education, health, and culture establishments in our country on every level.
Foundation wants to strengthen its non-governmental capacity and role in issues such as forest, soil, climate change, land loss and drought. It wants to adapt international cooperation in projects and practices on global scale. Working for the benefit of the present and future generations, the Aegean Forest Foundation is extremely willing and decisive in attempting any actions required on environment. It bears the obligation of developing the consciousness of the local people, especially of women and youth and providing their participation in any projects, campaigns, and events as well as trainings contained in its efforts for combating desertification and mitigation of the impacts of drought with support from non-governmental organizations and local municipalities. It has implemented more than 90 projects regarding forestation, sustainability of forests, flood basin and erosion control, combat against desertification, biological diversity and protecting species.