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Panel: Vital Voices Leading Climate Solutions

Climate change is the defining challenge of our generation. How our global community responds is crucial for the future of our planet. Getting it right means getting it right for all communities. Sustainable solutions require communities to have agency over their future and the resources to adapt and create solutions that work within their ecosystem.

Forest communities in the Global South suffer the greatest effects of climate change yet are least responsible for causing it. Those who are closest to the effects are closest to the solutions. Despite this, forest community leaders are largely missing from the discussion of solutions led by climate professionals, activists and politicians from the Global North, who have the greatest access to financial resources.

Community collaboration is embedded into Wildlife Works' conservation strategy. Wildlife Works conservation projects' success depends on establishing deep and long-term relationships with the local communities that is founded on trust, which takes years and thoughtful intention to develop. This community-led and human centric mindset is the bedrock of Wildlife Works conservation approach.

On Earth Day 2021 we partnered with Reclaim Collaborative to amplify the voices from the lifestyle supply chain ecosystem, including those from our colleagues at the Kasigau Project's Eco Factory. These makers are doing real work on creating and implementing nature-based solutions for climate change in their communities.

Watch the campaign’s panel discussion to hear our colleague Kassim at the Kenya Kasigau REDD+ project and other campaign brand participants speak to why and how those on the frontlines of climate change effects must have decision making power when working with partners outside of their community.

Kassim had this to share about his experience participating on the panel:

Being selected to participate in the panel was a privilege to me as I got a great experience on the zoom meeting that I have never done it before and this enhances my personal growth and development as the presentation built confidence in me. Secondly, meeting the other panelists, I got to learn though briefly the different problem-solving approach skills applied for instance for a sustainable development project you must not aim the destination/goals but enjoy the whole course. This can be translated to impacting behavior change through learning of new activities and attitudes. It also brought a sense of humour and excitement as I have been always wanted to be part of the solution of the effects of climate change. Sharing a word to bring a positive change to the globe was my pleasure. Furthermore, socialising with different people around the world is not something to take for granted as it gives the opportunity to get to know different cultures and their importance to our day to day lives. It was indeed amazing!!! Thank you team

Other panel highlights:

  • Kassim Mghandi from Wildlife Works gave examples of international development programs that failed because of the lack of community engagement.

  • Other topics covered include navigating power dynamics to create true and equal partnerships

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