The announcement of the new biodiversity fund did not take long to arouse reactions. Throughout the world, organizations welcome the establishment of this instrument, which comes to support above all the struggle waged by the indigenous populations for generations.The International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity (IIFB) today welcomed the target of 20% of the Global Biodiversity Framework Fund directed to Indigenous Peoples and local communities.
“As Indigenous Peoples and local communities we have seen our work and collaboration with GEF improve day by day, and today is a historical day,” said Lucy Mulenkei, Co-chair of the IIFB, speaking at the GEF Assembly in Vancouver.
“The approval of this trust fund with a specific commitment to Indigenous Peoples and local communities motivates and gives us hope that support will be achieved for the efforts to conserve biodiversity at local level,” she said.
“Indeed, the GEF trust fund could be is a great opportunity to reach out further to where we are able to ensure that biodiversity is restored with the full and effective participation of Indigenous Peoples and local communities women, girls, and youth,” said Mulenkei.
The Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework adopted in Montreal in December last year, recognizes the contribution, role and rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities to the conservation of biodiversity and resources in their lands and territories, as well as highlights in several targets, their full and equitable participation in decision-making towards the implementation of the framework.
“The IIFB is ready to work with governments and GEF agencies to implement the Global Biodiversity Fund at the national and local level,” said Ramiro Batzin, Co-chair of the IIFB.
“This funding announcement means that there is a historical opportunity to support the work of Indigenous Peoples,” he said.
Mulenkei said “Indigenous Peoples and local communities are happy that finally we are here. We still have a journey, a journey that Indigenous Peoples and local communities have always taken.” She reiterated that “we will move forward to ensure the implementation of the GBF is a success, and this GEF funding will ensure that these promises move closer towards being a reality”.