FINAL COMMUNIQUE- Workshop to determine scope of socio-cultural evaluation of ecosystem services provided to indigenous people and local communities in BSB Yamoussa and TNS
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The workshop to determine the scope of socio-cultural evaluation of ecosystem services provided to indigenous people and local communities in BSB Yamoussa and TNS was held from 14 to 16 August 2019 in Douala, Republic of Cameroon. The purpose of the workshop was to take stock of he socio-cultural services the complex ecosystems of the BSB Yamoussa and TNS protected areas provide to their indigenous people and local communities.
It was organized by the COMIFAC Executive Secretariat with the support of the GIZ’s Regional COMIFAC Support Project
The workshop made the following observations:
Evaluating the socio-cultural aspects of ecosystem services requires access to local reference information based on a participatory and gender-sensitive approach;
Knowledge of the socio-cultural aspects of ecosystem services helps reduce conflict around the use of natural resources in protected areas and paves the way for community conservation;
There are also socio-economic and socio-cultural aspects to ecosystem services;
In order to ensure participatory and sustainable management of ecosystems, conservation must take a cross-cutting approach to restore trust between people and administrations;
There are numerous socio-cultural services in and around underused and valuable protected areas that can promote sustainable territorial management and local development;
Private and often conflicting interests require a cross-cutting and conciliatory approach throughout the protected areas and their surroundings, hence the urgent need for an integrate management approach for the territories concerned.
Recommendations addressed to COMIFAC
The participants recommended:
Completion of the socio-cultural evaluation of ecosystem services provided by protected areas in order to gauge their impact in enhancing the well-being of indigenous and local communities.
Place the socio-economic development and promotion of socio-cultural services in and around protected areas within the framework of sustainable development and management of natural resources in the territories and for the well-being of the indigenous and local populations;
Engage the Minister of Territorial Management and the Minister of Local development and other sectoral Ministers along with the Minister of Protected Areas in developing and promoting socio-cultural services in and around protected areas;
Update the Consultants’ Terms of Reference and the Roadmap to reflect the recommendations of the workshop participants;
Integrate education in order to develop and transmit traditional knowledge:
Develop mechanisms to protect traditional knowledge;
Place special emphasis on job opportunities for local populations by enforcing sustainable management of ecosystem services;
Assess the economic potential of ecosystem services in order to maximize the benefits for stakeholders;
Establish a sub-regional sectoral strategy for the economic development of ecosystem services;
Harmonize the presentation of ecosystem services while taking into account the different views expressed during the workshop.
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