Indigenous fellowship to expand traditional knowledge

Last week our Indigenous and Traditional People’s Program launched its first-ever fellowship program and is offering four indigenous leaders, young or old, the opportunity to conduct a yearlong project in their communities with the support of CI resources. These fellowships are an excellent way for local leaders to expand their knowledge while exploring solutions to the impacts of climate change and the threats to ecosystems and biodiversity that are affecting their lands, communities, and livelihoods.

The program will focus on supporting the fellow’s research and demonstrating the contribution of traditional knowledge in adapting to climate change and maintaining healthy ecosystems, and on discovering how that knowledge can work with science and new technologies to influence policy and action. Two of the four fellowships will be focused on biodiversity conservation, and two on climate change mitigation and adaptation.

This past week, members of CI’s Indigenous Advisory Group met in Ecuador to discuss, among other things, the fellowship program. It was agreed that two of the IAG members, David James from Guyana and Mina Setra from Indonesia, will be on the committee which selects the final four candidates. While in Ecuador, they also helped spread word of the fellowship both to Ecuador’s indigenous communities and within their own networks in Guyana, Brazil, Guatemala, Panama and Indonesia.

Learn more about the fellowships at www.conservation.org/indigenousfellows

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