The Africa Learning Exchange (ALE) is being co-organized by Tenure Facility (TF) and the International Land Coalition (ILC) to increase impact of their common work for Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IP & LC) land rights. ALE will convene together selected partners, members and actors working to advance rights and conservation.
The exchange will provide a platform to learn, inspire, discuss, and coordinate on how to best advance different aspects of tenure security.
It will be co-hosted by the Community Land Action Now! (CLAN!), a network of IP & LC established to empower communities to legally own their ancestral lands, from 2-6th October 2023.
- Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities land rights,
- Conservation and climate
- Locally managed ecosystems and; environmental defenders.
Participants of ALE will have adequate space to share experiences and learn about strategies, approaches and practices that have proven effective in advancing IP & LC rights in Protected Areas, and in delivering solid conservation outcomes, and discuss challenges and approaches by IP & LC as climate and environmental defenders.
During the learning week, Tenure Facility partners and ILC members will:
- Connect with local communities and territories to learn from their experiences on restoring ecosystems and protecting areas.
- Connect with each other and amplify the regional learning network for sharing knowledge and experience and exploring possible collaborations.
- Reflect on the role of IPs and LCs in managing ecosystems, restoration and conservation in the light of international commitments and the opportunities in the region, and how such commitments can be used for targeted advocacy on the national level.
- Document experiences that demonstrate the importance of investing into IPLCs at scale, identify strategic areas of such investment, ranging from advocacy to data generation, to technical support etc.
The following communities have been identified with the support of CLAN!, ILEPA, Reconcile, KWCA and have made themselves available to host participants of the regional learning exchange in Africa. Each participant will participate in the visit of a community and will have to express their preference when registering for the event.
Community Visit 1 : Ogiek
Ogiek community of the Mau Forest Complex, which has about 40,000 members, has had its land rights recognized and human rights violations identified by the African Court. The visit will highlight the Community conservation and sustainable management of resources highlighted in the Court's judgment. The Ogiek depend on small-scale agriculture and forest grasses for health care due to limited access to health care. The positive judgment of the African Court in May 2017 recognized their rights to property, resources, non-discrimination, religion, culture and development. However, recent developments have put the community at even greater risk, leading to a court ruling for reparations in June 2022.
Community Visit 2: Endorois
The Endorois community has been fighting for their land rights since colonial times. The tour will highlight historical and current struggles, including land dispossession during the colonial era and the community's efforts to regain their rights through legal battles. It provides a better understanding of complex issues such as land rights, cultural preservation, sustainable development, conservation and human rights principles. Participants will witness the transition from traditional pastoralism to agropastoralism around Lake Bogoria and learn about their rich cultural heritage and struggle for justice. The importance of Lake Bogoria to the religious and cultural practices of the community will also be explored.
Community Visit 3: Maasai (Maji Moto, Naibosho)
The Maji Moto Group Ranch exemplifies land dispossession and the community's struggle for justice. Participants witness abuses of power, violations of land rights and the resilience of the community fighting for their rights through public litigation, advocacy and mass action. Instead, the Naboisho Reserve demonstrates a successful model of community-led conservation. Participants observe how Maasai landowners collectively manage the reserve, achieving positive results through integrated and multi-use management. The visit highlights the benefits and challenges of the conservation approach, emphasizing community involvement and collective decision-making.
Community Visit 4: Maasai (Narasha)
The visit to the Maasai community of Narasha highlights their struggle against forced eviction and the impact of geothermal projects and a national park on their pastoral livelihoods. Participants discover the lack of consultation and the reduction of pastures. The tour focuses on two themes: the community's struggle for inclusive conservation practices and the corporate culture surrounding geothermal energy. Participants explore community resilience, legal battles, and future plans for conservation. The role of women in the recognition of land rights is also highlighted.