Non-government organization Resolve launched a project to rehabilitate land affected by artisanal and small-scale diamond mining in Africa.

After miners leave a site, the soil gets depleted, while abandoned pits are filled with water. Adding to this, there’s the possible onset of insect-borne diseases and other safety hazards, like drownings, making the land unusable.

The result? Local inhabitants can no longer do basic farming in that area.

With that concern in mind, the non-government organization Resolve launched a project to rehabilitate these lands—one that focuses on areas affected by artisanal and small-scale diamond mining in Africa.

The Rehabilitation Project

Setting its sights first on Sierra Leone, the Peace Diamonds Restoration Initiative will address these problems while prioritizing areas that lack access to support. Likewise, the initiative plans on promoting women’s participation, particularly in consultations and decision-making.

According to Resolve, the pilot phase showed promise, as it succeeded in rehabilitating 90 abandoned diamond pits in Sierra Leone into arable land. Next, it plans on expanding its efforts across Sierra Land, while in 5 years’ time, the goal is to carry out work in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and other countries.

“The Peace Diamonds Restoration Initiative helps communities heal the land and achieve closure, and it’s an ideal way for the diamond and jewelry industry, from industrial miners to retailers, to give back,” explains Stephen D’Esposito, the president and CEO of Resolve, which absorbed the Diamond Development Initiative (DDI) almost two years ago.

This project received funding from both jewelry retailer Brilliant Earth and gemstone certifying body the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). Resolve added that it received a grant from the Tiffany & Co Foundation, while The Anglo American Foundation—part of De Beers parent company Anglo American—supported the design of the initiative and the early pilots.

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