Many of our 2020 camp experiences have been postponed due to the Covid-19 virus. We look forward to continue the gatherings when it is safe to do so. Please check our website or subscribe to our newsletter for the latest updates. We commend the efforts by so many of us to limit the spread of the virus and send deep thanks to the healthcare workers across the globe taking care of those most affected. We see our work of bringing balance back to ecosystems as more important than ever. Our team is busy building our organizational capacity during this time so that we can share the message of regenerative land management even further. We are grateful for your support and look forward to seeing you at camp in the future.
Camp Mainsprings is an 80-acre campus located in Kitongo on Lake Victoria, about 60 kilometers away from Mwanza, Tanzania. Thirty six acres are restored agroforests and polyculture gardens. Situated near the equator, Mainsprings has a tropical climate, with two distinct rain seasons; November through December and March into May.
Before Mainsprings began implementing its 36 acre Permaculture farm, the soil and land was a mixture of coarse sandy soils and rock which resulted in poor crop yields. But in just 9 years, what was once barren lakeside land now has a 30 foot canopy food forest and lush green gardens in rich black soil filled with life and biomass. Planted berms and swales used for water management have created beautiful and diverse tree rows that can be viewed across the campus. Along with a rise in trees and crop yields, birds, bees and wildlife numbers also increased significantly with the restored ecosystem. After seeing this great transformation and improvement in sustainability of food production, Mainsprings is actively engaging people and organizations throughout East Africa in restorative agriculture practices.
We hope to be a worldwide example of the benefits that alternative agriculture practices can provide.
Camp Mainsprings has restored roughly 36 hectares [TP1] of land by planting over 3,486 trees, and harvests over 40,000 kg of produce annually from the farm. Mainsprings has had 44 campers attend and complete its Permaculture Design Courses since it began offering the course in 2018.
You can expect beautiful campgrounds with a breathtaking view of Lake Victoria located meters away from a restaurant and lodge that provides restrooms, showers and any food or refreshment needs. Buffet style meals and tents are provided during scheduled courses, such as the International Permaculture Design Course that lasts 10-14 days on campus. During these courses you can expect to participate in extensive Permaculture training activities such as developing whole acres of land, while learning from experts in the field. Group discussions are held every evening around a campfire to share and reflect on the day’s activities.
Volunteers who would be beneficial to Camp Mainsprings would be expert regenerative agriculture trainers, skilled construction workers and engineers, and any individual wanting to become part of our restoration movement.
Nature hikes, volunteer opportunities at the Mainsprings school and campus.
EUR10 per night, including tented accommodation, washrooms, and breakfast. Does not include lunch or dinner, or any course fees. Volunteer work on the farm is included for all campers. Other high-end accommodations available for an additional fee.
We are sorry to announce that due to Covid-19 health concerns, we will not be hosting any courses on campus until further notice.
Camp Mainsprings aims to be the leading restoration agriculture camp in East Africa, providing thousands of individuals and organizations with educational opportunities to learn the skills needed to transform degraded farm lands into soil-rich, sustainable food forests-ultimately helping to alleviate rural poverty while regenerating the environment across the region.
Mainsprings isn’t just home to the farm and wildlife, but also to 48 vulnerable or orphaned girls who live and attend the Primary and Secondary school alongside 400 other students. These children, and the staff who supervise and care for them, are not part of the ERC camp, however they do share parts of the campus and infrastructure. The Permaculture farm that Mainsprings has created helps to provide over 1,100 meals per day for everyone on the campus. Also on campus is a small health clinic that is run by a Mainsprings doctor and nurse team that treats over 3,000 patients per year. These other programs work in conjunction with Mainsprings’ mission of alleviating extreme rural poverty.
Children’s play facilities
Small Healthcare Clinic with a doctor and nurse on campus
Restoration of livelihoods
Your safety is very important to us. Most camps are in locations that are completely safe for you to travel to. Some camps are in locations where there is civil unrest, higher levels of crime, or in areas where there could be severe nature events (earthquakes, tornados, vulcanic eruptions). We strongly advise you to check with your national authority’s travel advisory service to see if there are specific travel advisories for the region you are travelling to. We strongly advise you to comply with that travel advisory. If there is a negative travel advisory for the area you plan to go to, we want to impress on you that it is your decision to not heed the warnings and go. ERC can then not be liable in that situation if something happens to you.
Work at camps is usually safe. The camp coordinators make your safety their highest priority too. But you will be working with tools and sometimes even (heavy) machinery. Sometimes the terrain can be slightly treacherous. Heat or cold can become a problem for people at work that do not take the necessary measures to prevent injury from weather conditions. Especially in remote locations, all people at an Ecosystem Restoration Camp will need to watch out for eachother’s safety. For this reason we ask you to also sign our Code of Conduct, through which you commit to contributing to a safe environment at camps for all that are there with you. Take yours and all other camper’s safety seriously! Together, while watching over eachother, we can restore our ecosystems safely and successfully.
Stichting Ecosystem Restoration Foundation /
Ecosystem Restoration Camps 2020