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Community / Land projects / Solidarity with African Environmental

Solidarity with African Environmental


05/21 - 09/23


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The project aims to support indigenous peoples and local communities and their grassroots organisations in up to seven countries inAfrica (Kenya, Tanzania, DRC, Nigeria, Senegal, Uganda and Madagascar) in their efforts to resist and be protected against such threats as they defend their collective lands and territories of life. The actions and forms of support will be both defensive and preventative in nature and will respond directly to their self-determined needs and priorities, including, inter alia, awareness campaigns, trainings, digital and physical security measures, legal support, and communications platforms for regional and global advocacy. The project relates most closely to the impact themes of “improved access to resources and employment” and “open up spaces for political participation and to promote citizen engagement”. For the former, the project supports indigenous peoples and local communities to remain on their customary lands and territories and continue their self-determined ways oflife and livelihoods. For the latter, the project supports indigenous peoples and communities, especially those who are routinely marginalised and discriminated againstand face multiple intersectional inequalities, to advocate for legal and political recognition for their contributions to conservation and sustainable development and for their rights and collective responsibilities to defend their lands and territories. Natural Justice: Lawyers for Communities and the Environment, a not-for-profit organisation registered in South Africa and Kenya with hubs in Cape Town, Nairobi and Dakar, is the project applicant and passes the online eligibility test. The project will be undertaken by grassroots organisations in up to seven countries in Africa with focused support within the region from Natural Justice and local/regional and global support from the ICCA Consortium, a non-for-profit association registered in Switzerland with more than 175 Member organisations in 80 countries, including Natural Justice. The project is based on mini proposals prepared by grassroots organisations about specific situations and priority actions of indigenous peoples’ and communities’ territories of life and their defenders under threat. These include local and national plansfor the projected 2020 global mobilisation on land and environmental defenders (2-9December 2020), which provides an important and timely opportunity to advocate for their rights through local-to-global collective action. Their plans also outline priority actions to build momentum towards this global mobilisation and address emerging threats that may arise thereafter. Importantly, whereas many campaigns on environmental and human rights defenders focus solely on individuals, this project will include astrong focus on collective community and intersectional dimensions of defenders’ work. The proposed timeline is May 2021 - April 2022 and the requested budget is EUR 200,000. The project will also build on the African Environmental Defenders Fund implemented by Natural Justice in partnership with the International Land Coalition (ILC) and the ICCA Consortium, bringing in further synergies and opportunities for collective local-regional-global action. The goal is to minimise and manage the risks faced by Environmental and Land Rights Defenders in Africa by standing with them in solidarity through increased support to enhance their resilience in terms of protection and increased visibility of the struggle of Defenders.

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