Shelter For Life’s Remarkable Milestone: Planting a Million Trees and Beyond!

Shelter For Life is dedicated to making a positive impact on the planet. By planting over one million fruit and non-fruit tree orchards in several areas of Afghanistan, we have not only transformed landscapes but also created a lasting change in communities.

The ripple effect of our efforts are wide-ranging , fostering sustainability, and empowering individuals. We have taken our impactful work to Senegal, The Gambia, and Guinea-Bissau by planting cashews. Let’s delve deeper into the significance of orchards and how they can help shape a greener, more sustainable world.

The Power of Orchards

Orchards offer numerous benefits that extend far beyond their immediate surroundings. Here are some compelling reasons why Shelter For Life has chosen orchards as a means to create positive impacts.

  • Diversifying Agricultural Landscapes: By adding diversity to agricultural landscapes, orchards enhance food security and reduce dependence on a limited number of staple crops. This ensures a more resilient and sustainable food production system, protecting communities from potential crop failures and promoting a well-rounded diet. 
  • Reliable Source of Income: Orchards provide a reliable source of income with long-term productivity. By cultivating fruit and non-fruit trees, communities can generate sustainable livelihoods, and improve economic stability and overall quality of life. This income diversification strengthens local economies and reduces vulnerability to external shocks. 
  • Soil Stabilization and Improved Water Management: One of the most significant benefits of orchards is their ability to stabilize the soil. By preventing erosion, improving soil structure, and contributing organic matter, orchards ensure the long-term health and fertility of the land. And along with the use of irrigation systems and reservoirs, orchards promote better water management practices, optimizing water usage and minimizing waste.

Global Impact of Orchards

The impact of Shelter For Life’s orchard initiatives transcends borders. Here’s how orchards contribute to positive change on a global scale:

  • Climate Change Mitigation: Orchards play a vital role in mitigating climate change by sequestering significant amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Through photosynthesis, trees absorb carbon dioxide and store it in their biomass, reducing greenhouse gas concentrations. This helps combat climate change by minimizing the negative effects of carbon emissions and fostering a healthier environment.
  • Microclimate Modification: The presence of orchards influences the microclimate in various ways. Trees provide shade, reducing heat absorption and reflection.. They also act as windbreaks, and help protect crops and communities from harsh weather conditions. Moreover, orchards modify temperature and humidity levels, creating a more conducive environment for both humans and wildlife.
  • Biodiversity Enhancement: Orchards enhance biodiversity by providing habitats for various species. These diverse ecosystems foster resilience and ecological balance, benefiting both wildlife and humans. The presence of pollinators, birds, and beneficial insects in orchards improves the overall health of the ecosystem and ensures the successful pollination and production of fruit trees.

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Mustafa Omar
Chief Executive Officer

Mustafa Omar has worked in Shelter For Life’s field projects and headquarters organizational management positions, leading operations and business development around the world. Mr. Omar has managed and overseen a variety of projects in some of the world’s most difficult places to work, including Afghanistan, Iraq, Liberia, and South Sudan. He holds a degree in Economics from University of Wisconsin and an MBA from the University of St. Thomas, and a graduate degree in Urban Planning from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota.

Gordon Wright
Vice Chairman

Gordon A. Wright is Founder and President of over 40 years with JIMI International and is an Elder at Tulsa Christian Fellowship. Mr. Wright owned and operated a lawn and tree service business for nearly 15 years. Mr. Wright also served with the US Army for three years in the 1960s.Two of Mr. Wright’s years were spent in South Korea as a Brigade Intelligence Sergeant. Mr. Wright has provided mentoring and counseling to spiritual leaders around the world; with specific attention to individuals in Russia, Ukraine and former Soviet Bloc countries. Mr. Wright helped to found and direct East/West Resources International and Global Assistance Partners International. Mr. Wright has served as one of the original founding board of directors for Shelter For Life International. Born in Erie, Pennsylvania, Gordon grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and currently resides in Tulsa, Oklahoma.