Celebrities including Chris Packham, Joanna Lumley and Zoe Wanamaker are backing a campaign to save a special Ethiopian forest.
Tree Aid’s “Future Forest Appeal” will provide communities in Metema, Ethiopia, with tools and training to restore nearly 10,000 hectares of degraded forest, the charity says.
The project is part of the “Great Green Wall” campaign in Africa’s Sahel region to restore 8,000km (5,000 miles) of land across the continent.
The Metema forest is important as it is made up of Boswelia trees, which produce frankincense – a precious tree resin that is used in essential oils around the world.
Tree Aid says the Future Forest scheme will work with 2,852 households, including women, to increase their income from sustainable frankincense production by 25%, while protecting and restoring 9,563 hectares (23,630 acres) of forest.
Springwatch presenter Chris Packham said: “People in the Sahel are living with the devastating effects of our global climate crisis.
“Temperatures are rising, land is becoming infertile and the desert is spreading south, like a wave in slow-motion.
“The Great Green Wall is one of the most inspiring restoration movements of our time, and Tree Aid is making a long-lasting contribution.
“I urge people to support the Future Forest appeal to back this inspiring African solution to the climate crisis.”
The African-led Great Green Wall project includes planting and regenerating trees, water and soil conservation, protecting existing forests and working with communities to have the tools and training to protect their resources.
It has been preventing further spread of the Sahara Desert and securing a sustainable future in the Sahel region of Africa by providing food security and jobs, Tree Aid said.
This region has been one of the worst hit by the climate crisis and is often affected by drought and food shortages.
Once complete, the Great Green Wall will be the largest living structure on the planet, the charity said.
Tree Aid patron Joanna Lumley said: “I have been supporting Tree Aid for almost 30 years because it provides such an effective, practical solution to tackling poverty and the climate crisis.
“I urge people to please give what they can to the Future Forest appeal, knowing their gift will be doubled by the Government.
“Together, we can fight the effects of the climate crisis to secure a greener, more sustainable future for millions of people.”
Actress Zoe Wanamaker said: “I have been supporting Tree Aid for over two decades because they don’t just plant trees and walk away – they work in partnership with communities to find long-term solutions that tackle both poverty and the climate crisis.
“I encourage people to support the Future Forest appeal if they can, knowing they can have double the impact as their gift will be matched by the government.”
Donations from the public will be matched by the UK Government until July 11, doubling the fundraising total. To find out more, people can visit www.treeaid.org