Here's the next update from Neil in the Philippines.
Recently we held one of our many community gatherings with the village of Naubo, a newly created village on the edge of the Mantiquil forest. We’ve been working with them for the last year or so, since we employed JR as a Community Facilitator. JR’s role has been to work with local people to understand their challenges and build confidence that the way we work is through helping people to shift their behaviour so that they gain from the conservation of natural resources (including wildlife), rather than suffer.
One of the milestones along the way of supporting poor communities is through the creation of local associations. Helping the people to organise themselves is fundamental to the community receiving support from local government and other institutions. I’m pleased to say that during the visit, the community of Naubo formally declared themselves as a people’s organisation under the name of ‘Naubo Community Forest Association’ (name in Cebuano). It is this association that will honour the conservation agreements we are putting into place.
Resolution to declare the Canaway Naubo Rural Development Association.
Organising themselves is one of the first stages of finding solutions to the challenges facing the community. What follows from here is a pathway that we are very familiar with – discussions on the various importance of the issues, agreement of priority areas to focus on, and ‘solutions’ for each of the priorities. We know it will be a long process, requiring our support over many years, and our commitment to conserving this critical area for wildlife is crucial if we are to conserve species such as the Negros bleeding heart dove, Wreath-wrinkled hornbills, Taritic hornbills, Visayan warty pig and Philippines spotted deer – all in imminent danger of extinction.
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