It is estimated that these forests are homes and livelihoods to an estimated 85 million people, and despite their interdependent relationship with these landscapes, they are often left unheard due to a lack of access and capacity to participate in decision-making processes. However, civil society plays a fundamental role as stewards of the landscapes they live in and are among our most vital partners in conservation.
To better protect forests across the Mekong, we are working with local communities to design locally-led solutions and support them to take control of their forest resources, the Voice for Mekong Forests project is:
- Establishing a forest governance monitoring system which involves non-state actors in the collection and use of forest data
- Building capacity for civil society to voice their concerns and leverage their negotiating positions to policymakers to achieve more representation and inclusivity
- Empowering smallholders to adopt forest production certifications and standards to increase their potential and credibility as forest product sources in the international market