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Elephant Cooperation: Our philanthropic partner at the Kasigau REDD+ Project

Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust: Our partner  in the   Chyulu Hills REDD+ Project

 Our partner in the Mai Ndombe Jurisdictional REDD+ Program

Peoples Forests Partnership:

Our partner in driving direct finance to forest communities

Everland: Our exclusive sales partner

Elephant Origins Tea: Our partner in delivering wildlife friendly tea

Stand for Trees: Our SME and consumer credit purchases partner


Wildlife Works at COP28

November 21, 2023

Wildlife Works at COP28
Summary of Events: Dec 1, 6pm: A women’s panel on fairness, transparency and equality:Wildlife Works panel at IETA Business Hub This panel will be live streamed at this link . Dec 3, 9am: A Revolutionary Shift for the Voluntary Carbon Market: Equitable Earth panel at the Nature Positive Pavilion This panel will be live streamed at this link . Dec 4, 4pm: Getting the carbon market right for Communities: Peoples Forests Partnership panel at the IETA Business Hub Dec 6, 1:15pm: Voices of Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities, Faces of the High Integrity Carbon Market SE Room 5, Blue Zone More details on these events are below. Contact us if you'd like to meet with us at COP28 More info on the IETA business hub where we will conducting our meetings. IETA BusinessHub in the Blue Zone, Opportunity Petal, Area B6, Building 84 (maps HERE and HERE ). Friday, Dec 1 6pm-7:30pm IETA Pavilion – Business Hub in the Blue Zone Session title: A women’s panel on fairness, transparency and equality: A reality check on CCP 7 Hosted by Wildlife Works Unsustainable development is not an option. With transparency and community rights centered, carbon markets can spotlight what often lies in the dark. This panel will feature voices from the field and practical examples on operationalizing safeguards that haven proven to work in complex environments. Wildlife Works will speak to their learning on how safeguards need to be improved to make the invisible seen. (50 word max) Speakers: Moderator: Anna Lehmann, Wildlife Works Francisca Arara, Extraordinary Secretary for Indigenous Peoples of the state of Acre, Brazil Puyr Tembé, Secretary of Indigenous People of the State of Pará Maria Silvaneide Faustino Nogueira, APOINME/ANMIGA, Pernambuco, Caatinga Biome, Xurucu Orubá people Jaqueline Gonçalves Porto, ANMIGA, from Dourado, Pantanal Biome, and Guarani/Kayowá people IC VCM (tbc) UN REDD Gender team (tbc) Sunday, Dec 3 9am Nature Positive Pavilion in the Blue Zone Session title: A Revolutionary Shift for the Voluntary Carbon Market: Leadership from Forest Communities and Global South Countries Hosted by Equitable Earth Leaders of Indigenous Peoples and Global South governments join together at this panel discussion to discuss how to end deforestation by 2030 through a new and revolutionary shift in the voluntary carbon market. This panel’s speakers will discuss community-led forest carbon projects and other initiatives they are engaged in to deliver equitable results for climate action and biodiversity protection that drive economic development for their people. Speakers Sonia Guajajara, Minister of Indigenous Peoples, Brazil Eve Bazaiba, Minister for the Environment, Democratic Republic of Congo Gustavo Sánchez, Mexican Network of Forest Peoples Organizations Puyr Tembé, Federation of Indigenous Peoples of Pará Julia Sunderland, Co-founder of Equitable Earth Beto Borges, Forest Trends / Equitable Earth IPLC Advisory Group Seats are limited, therefore kindly RSVP here . Monday, Dec 4 4pm IETA- PFP IETA Pavilion – Business Hub in the Blue Zone Session title: Getting the Carbon Market Right for Communities Hosted by Peoples Forests Partnership The Peoples Forests Partnership is proud to host a fire side chat between representatives of indigenous and local communities and carbon standards organisations. Together, they will reflect on what progress has been made on getting standards to work for the people and how to tackle the challenges that still lie ahead to unpack a workable road towards fully nested projects. (50 word max) Moderator: Anna Lehmann, Peoples Forests Partnership Executive Committee Member & WWC Global Climate Policy Director Panel Speakers: Francisca Arara, Extraordinary Secretary for Indigenous Peoples of the state of Acre, Brazil Gustavo Sanchez, Mesoamerican Alliance of Peoples and Forests, PFP Executive Committee Member IC VCM Indigenous Forum (tbc), Julia Sunderland, co-founder of Equitable Earth Christy Magerkurth, ART/TREEs Colin Moore, WCS Dec 6, 1:15pm: Voices of Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities, Faces of the High Integrity Carbon Market SE Room 5, Blue Zone
Update on Kasigau

November 20, 2023

Update on Kasigau
November 20, 2023 Following an extensive independent third-party investigation, Wildlife Works has terminated the head of security at our Kasigau Corridor project for gross misconduct, including conduct in violation of the company’s policy against sexual harassment. Our internal investigation is continuing in order to establish the circumstances surrounding all the allegations and to open a safe network for our employees to come forward with any further information. We also terminated the HR manager on the basis that he created a culture of fear and intimidation that, according to interviewed personnel, prevented reporting of sexual harassment incidents. These individuals had previously been suspended immediately following our receipt of a letter from Somo in August 2023. We firmly condemn these individuals’ behaviours. We sincerely apologize to the women and families directly affected, all our employees, our stakeholder communities in Kenya and our customers and partners around the world. We realize that it is our responsibility to do more than apologize. We are committed to learning from this experience to ensure such behaviours never occur again in any of our projects around the world. We have hired a female Kenyan counselor who is on site for several weeks to conduct listening sessions with staff and to provide ongoing support for the women affected as well as all employees who wish to speak with her. Part of this healing process will be to provide effective remediation to the women in our company and in the community who were directly affected. We will not stop there. We need to continue to rebuild trust with our employees, the community who rely on the revenue from the sale of carbon credits for many essential community development needs, the customers who buy those credits, and the wider public. For this, we are committed to do the hard work to continue bringing about long-term and lasting positive change. Beyond our zero tolerance policy, we are committed to ensuring a safe workplace with effective and anonymous reporting mechanisms. In addition to hiring Kenyan experts to help us create new processes, we have been holding a series of internal grievance meetings to understand from our employees how we can improve the way we work with them and our partner communities on safeguarding measures. The counselor will also be auditing our policies and procedures and assisting in the creation of our future grievance and human resources reporting policies. Already these actions have been productive. We are in the process of forming a gender steering committee for the project whose members will be decided by the female staff. They will play a pivotal role in designing company policies and our ongoing engagement of gender rights specialists. We will also be undertaking leadership and accountability training at all levels of the company. Finally, out of an abundance of caution and concern, we will be carrying out independent investigations at our other global project sites and regional offices to make sure we go above and beyond the international safeguarding standards. We have always believed in radical transparency and that includes being willing to talk openly about what happened and remediate it, very firmly and rigourously. In that spirit we will be fully transparent about our progress on this journey and will continue to update you. We are open to answering any questions or listening to suggestions. Please contact us : or email at press at wildlifeworks dot com
Wildlife Works official statement to Somo’s Report

November 3, 2023

Wildlife Works official statement to Somo’s Report
November 5, 2023 update in response to Somo’s November 4th statement: HERE Media requests, please contact us . November 3, 2023 Dear friends and colleagues, Early next week, a report is expected to be published by Dutch NGO Somo that details shocking allegations of sexual harassment at our Kasigau Corridor project. At Wildlife Works, a deep relationship built on mutual trust with our community partners is the foundation of what makes our conservation projects work. I personally, and we as an organization, are shocked to learn that we have breached this bond of trust at the Kasigau Corridor project. Our third-party investigation by an independent Kenyan firm into Somo’s allegations found many of the allegations were not substantiated. However, we identified that two individuals had engaged in deeply inappropriate and harmful behavior for which we have zero tolerance. This was heartbreaking for me to learn, and should never have happened. I am deeply sorry for the pain that has been caused. We have already taken immediate steps to address the gaps in our processes and to ensure the strength and thoroughness of our policy and procedures. We are also in the final stages of a disciplinary process against the individuals involved in accordance with Kenyan law. Once this process is completed, we will be able to share more information. Below is what we can share today. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me directly. Mike Korchinsky President Wildlife Works Carbon Our investigation In August 2023, we received a letter from Somo containing shocking allegations of sexual harassment at our Kasigau Corridor REDD+ project in Kenya. Upon learning about these allegations perpetrated by senior male staff members of Wildlife Works, we took immediate action and commissioned an extensive third-party investigation by an independent firm of Kenyan legal experts in sexual harassment and discrimination whose investigators are trained in gender-based violence. We also suspended the two named staff members and an additional staff member we were able to identify pending the outcome of this investigation. Below is a summary of the allegations made by Somo in their letter to us. Our resulting investigation, which has just been completed, found that many of these allegations were not substantiated. However, the investigation did reveal evidence of improper conduct by two individuals. We are in the final stages of a disciplinary process against the involved individuals in accordance with Kenyan law. Once this process is completed, we will be able to share more information. The allegations made by Somo include: That sexual harassment and abuse by senior male members of Wildlife Works staff and rangers was widespread That male employees within Wildlife Works were able to exploit the company’s power as a large employer in an area marked by poverty, and that they abuse this power to coerce women into abusive sexual relationships That perpetrators promised women benefits, such as preferential treatment and promotion, in exchange for sex, and/or used threats of demotion or dismissal to coerce their victims into submission That women were subject to coercive and physical tactics including bullying and intimidation, unwanted sexual touching, groping, physical assaults and attempted rape That a senior member of staff had tried to extort sex from the spouses of junior male rangers while they were at work That Wildlife Works has allowed or enabled a culture of serious abuse to persist at Kasigau because of a fear speaking negatively about Wildlife Works could lead to retaliatory steps Somo has yet to give Wildlife Works the right of reply as laid out in their Code of Conduct. However, we expect Somo to publish their report in the coming days, before our disciplinary proceedings against the named individuals are complete. Improving Our Processes Along with beginning the third-party investigation by an independent Kenyan firm, we took steps to examine and strengthen our HR policies and procedures where needed. These included making improvements to and increasing transparency within the grievance process, and associated checks and balances. Furthermore, we are enrolling a Kenyan consultant on workplace gender-based equity harassment and sexual violence to do a full audit of and improvement plan for policies and procedures. We are setting up a third-party managed whistleblower line which will be open for future grievance reporting. We will also be conducting community listening sessions as soon as the disciplinary actions are completed. We recognize this is a marathon - not a sprint - to make sure this is done right. Our commitment to our employees and the local community We remain steadfast in our commitment to ensuring the well-being and safety of both our team members and the broader community. We are unwavering in our commitment to strengthen the trust of our employees and community. The strength of our projects is grounded in direct management, relying on the knowledge of our local community partners and the expertise of our local employees. As part of our commitment to our employees and local communities and our organizational values, we are committed to ensuring that we have in place safe and trusted reporting channels that are open to all, but we must always strive to do better. Wildlife Works has been an employer in the region for the past 25 years. Job creation is one of our core conservation strategies. Currently, the Kasigau Corridor REDD+ Project employs over 400 people, the vast majority of whom live and work directly within their local communities. We are dedicated to the ongoing effort of progress and adaptation, never at the cost of anyone's health and safety. Engagement with Somo Upon receiving Somo’s letter in August with the allegations, we promptly responded to them in writing letting them know that we have launched a third-party investigation with an independent Kenyan firm. We are aware that SOMO has shared a draft investigation report with third parties and that it intends to publish it imminently. If true, this investigation report has never been shared for comment with Wildlife Works, thus violating section 8 of SOMO’s Code of Conduct which provides for a right of reply. We will be submitting a formal complaint through their open grievance mechanism. Response to Somo’s November 4th statement November 5, 2023 1) Wildlife Works is in the disciplinary phase of our investigation which will soon be completed. Somo is aware that we have not completed this phase of our investigation, but they chose to publish their report in advance of learning the outcome of our investigation, which denies us the right to respond to the inaccuracies in their report, as their own published code of conduct “right of reply” requires. 2) Our investigation was conducted by independent, third-party experts. Wildlife Works selected Nairobi-based law firm Anjarwalla and Khanna (A&K) to conduct this investigation because they are recognized experts in sexual harassment. They were not our lawyers prior to this matter. A&K then employed an investigative company with specific expertise in gender-based abuse who actually conducted the investigation. No Wildlife Works personnel were involved in conducting any aspect of the investigation. 3) A&K’s investigation was extensive and thorough . A&K’s third-party, independent investigation interviewed 38 relevant people mostly from within the company, as this is an employment matter, but also within the broader community. From this group of interviewees, A&K’s investigative team were able to obtain findings that addressed all of the allegations in the Somo report, and no further allegations came to light. Somo’s criticism of the fact that we did not interview all of their interviewees seems inappropriate given A&K’s investigative team was not informed of who Somo interviewed (due to the need to maintain anonymity for all interviewees). However A&K’s independent investigators were able to interview people with direct knowledge of the allegations. 4) Protection and support for victims. Somo’s report, as well as our independent investigation, rightly protects the identities of any victims of the harassment. We are fully committed to working with our gender-based consultant to provide effective mechanisms for any victims to safely come forward to us, or anonymously and to provide support and remedies to those victims. 5) The sexual harassment misconduct that has been substantiated was perpetrated by one individual. Somo’s report attempts to indicate the widespread nature of this problem, yet in their letter to us they identified one perpetrator as responsible for the specific sexual harassment allegations, and one department as the place where all these allegations occurred; and A&K’s investigation also found that was the case. 6) Our existing grievance process did not identify this case of sexual harassment. Our existing grievance procedures have effectively resolved many types of issues raised by our employees and community members throughout our 25 year history. However the sexual harassment allegations in Somo’s report made against one of our senior staff members never surfaced through our grievance process. It is painfully clear to us now that we had gaps in our grievance process specific to sexual harassment issues, which must be treated differently and we are committed to fixing this issue.
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