Indigenous Knowledge and Leadership Delivering Climate Action on Forests

Representatives of Conservation International, the Dedicated Grant Mechanism for Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (DGM), and la Coordinadora de las Organizaciones Indígenas de la Cuenca Amazónica (COICA) co-hosted a side event today at the 46th meeting of the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). During the event, several speakers shared their experiences as members of indigenous peoples and local communities (IPLCs) pursuing forest-related climate action. A summary of these presentations is below, and the full presentation is available through the UNFCCC Climate Change Studio.

Following an introduction by Lina Barrera of Conservation International, Grace Balawag, co-chair of the DGM Global Steering Committee, gave an overview of the DGM, its relation to the Forest Investment Program, and its unique governance structure. To supplement this information, Johnson Cerda, Technical Director of the DGM Global Executing Agency presented the DGM's objectives and theory of change. This overview set the stage for case studies from two country projects: DGM Saweto Peru and DGM Burkina Faso.

Nery Zapata, representing DGM Saweto Peru and the Asociación Interétnica de Desarrollo de la Selva Peruana (AIDESEP), spoke about the progress of the project to date. In this early stage, DGM Saweto Peru has put much of its focus on support for legal recognition of indigenous peoples, titling of traditional indigenous lands, and community forest management. The project has approved funding for 17 local organizations to pursue these goals, and they are already making substantial progress. Over 50% of the projects supporting legal recognition are in the final stages of that process, and 81% of land titling projects have completed their initial fieldwork. In total, the land titling projects are expected to cover an area of approximately 131,900 hectares (over 500 square miles). In pursuit of more sustainable community forest management, the DGM is also supporting 29 native communities in their efforts to install improved fish farms, implement agroforestry systems, and strengthen tourist activities. Ms. Zapata ended her presentation by adding that the DGM is a mechanism that should be replicated to achieve greater effectiveness and sustainability in other projects.

Idrissa Zeba, chair of the National Steering Committee of DGM Burkina Faso and soon-to-be co-chair of the Global Steering Committee, presented an update next on the status of the DGM Burkina Faso project. Officially launched in March 2016, DGM Burkina Faso has made substantial progress over the past year. By July 2016, the project had received 651 sub-project proposals, which demonstrates the substantial demand for direct IPLC access to climate finance. Over the next few months, the project team reviewed these proposals and selected 14 for implementation. The funds for these sub-projects were disbursed in March 2017, and they are planning to launch their next call for proposals by July 2017. He noted the great potential for the DGM to serve as a model for engagement with local communities in the fight against climate change.

In the final portion of the event, Edwin Vasquez Campos of COICA and Rodrigo de la Cruz of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) gave a presentation on the relation between indigenous knowledge and the reduction of emissions in the Amazon basin, particularly in regards to the Amazon Indigenous REDD+ Project (RIA), being implemented jointly by COICA and WWF. RIA is a model for contributing to climate change solutions by reducing emissions through a holistic approach favored by indigenous peoples, which values forests on more than just their potential as carbon sinks. For example, indigenous use of the forest has maintained plant cover through, rotating use of soils, seasonal variability of diets, and the sustainable development and use of land for agriculture, hunting, and meditation.

Overall, this event was a good showcase of some of the ways that IPLC knowledge and leadership can contribute to climate action, but much of that potential remains underutilized. Through greater direct access to climate finance and the development of an IPLC Knowledge Platform, as included in Decision 135 of the Paris Agreement, this leadership and knowledge can be effective at a much larger scale.

Announcing the Latin America Regional Exchange, June, 2017

Anuncio del Intercambio Regional de América Latina, en junio de 2017

Agencia Global de Implementación, con el apoyo del MDE de Brasil, se está preparando para el último intercambio del año fiscal, que se celebrará en Minas Gerais, Brasil, del 15 al 20 de junio de 2017. Los participantes en el intercambio tendrán la oportunidad de ver de primera mano proyectos dirigidos por la comunidad que han sido financiados a nivel nacional por el MDE, que se centran en actividades generadoras de ingresos y de manejo forestal sostenible. Durante la realización de las visitas de campo, el GEA y el MDE Brasil facilitarán presentaciones centradas en temas técnicos como REDD +, el Acuerdo de París y las Contribuciones Determinadas a Nivel Nacional, para reducir la brecha entre la política internacional y la acción climática a nivel local.

El contenido de cada intercambio se planifica con aportaciones de los miembros del Comité Directivo Mundial. Además, el GSC del MDE, en coordinación con el NSC, nombra a los participantes del intercambio según su capacidad para cumplir con la descripción previamente incluida, junto con los siguientes criterios:

1. Tengan un conocimiento profundo acerca de los pueblos indígenas y las comunidades locales de su país.

2. Sean indígenas o miembros de una comunidad local.

3. Participen activamente en cuestiones locales relacionadas con los bosques y el desarrollo sostenible.

4. De preferencia se hayan involucrado en otras conferencias o redes relacionadas con el cambio climático o los bosques.

5. Si el participante es de un país del MDE, este debe tener experiencia comprobable de haber contribuido al proceso del MDE a nivel nacional e internacional.

Para obtener más información sobre intercambios anteriores del MDE, visítenos en nuestra página web y eche un vistazo a las presentaciones y los informes de talleres que allí se encuentran.

The Global Executing Agency, with the support of DGM Brazil is preparing for the last exchange of the fiscal year to be held in Minas Gerais, Brazil between June 15-20, 2017.  Exchange participants will have the opportunity to see first hand community-driven projects that have been funded at the DGM national level that focus on income-generating activities and sustainable forest management. While conducting field visits, the GEA and DGM Brazil will facilitate presentations focusing on technical topics such as REDD+, the Paris Agreement and Nationally Determined Contributions--bridging the gap between international policy and climate action at the local level.  

The content of each exchange is planned with input from members of the Global Steering Committee. In addition, the DGM GSC in coordination with the NSC nominates exchange participants based on their ability to fulfill the earlier description, along with fitting the below criteria: 

1. The participant has in-depth knowledge of indigenous peoples and local communities in their country.

2. The participant is indigenous or a member of a local community.

3.  The participant is actively engaged in local context issues related to forests and sustainable development.

4. Ideally, the participant has engaged with other conferences and/or networks related to climate change or forests.

5.  If the participant is from a DGM country, participant should have proven experience of contributing to the DGM process at the national/global level. 

To learn more about previous DGM exchanges, please visit our webpage and check out the presentations and workshop reports!



Brazil National Steering Committee members Maria do Socorro Teixeira Lima and Srewe da Mato de Brito, and Global Steering Committee representative Joao Nonoy Krikati join the rest of the DGM delegation for the annual Global Steering Committee meeting held in Brasilia, Brazil from April 18-20, 2017. 

Brazil National Steering Committee members Maria do Socorro Teixeira Lima and Srewe da Mato de Brito, and Global Steering Committee representative Joao Nonoy Krikati join the rest of the DGM delegation for the annual Global Steering Committee meeting held in Brasilia, Brazil from April 18-20, 2017. 

DGM Steering Committee Members Participate in UNPFII World Bank Side Events Program

George Weyasu from DGM Indonesia, Srewe da Mato de Brito from DGM Brazil, and Grace Balawag, GSC co-chair participated in the World Bank Side Event at the DGM and FIP Update and Discussion panel at the UN Permanent Forum. Srewe, from the National Steering Committee of Brazil, described the types of challenges that DGM projects are addressing through its' recent request for proposals and shared photos from the communities. George, who has participated in the UN Permanent Forum in previous years, serves on the National Steering Committee for Indonesia. He described the 7 regions that will be prioritized for DGM projects and provided insight into the process of establishing the Indonesia national steering committee, which is composed off both indigenous peoples and local communities.

The DGM team will further share the message of project progress and how DGM is pushing forward the implementation of UNDRIP during the side event "Illustrating IPLC-driven Implementation of Climate Adaptation and Mitigation Activities" taking place on April 26, 2017 from 4:30-6:00 PM in the UN Conference Room B. 

Third Annual Global Steering Committee Meeting!

The DGM is getting ready for the Third Annual Global Steering Committee Meeting to be held in Brasilia, Brazil! The GSC will be reviewing proposed activities for the upcoming fiscal year, approving important documents such as the Communications Plan, and learning about the progress of implementation in the various DGM countries. Representatives from Brazil, Burkina Faso, DRC, Republic of Congo, Ghana, Indonesia, Mexico, Mozambique, Nepal and Peru will be present. Special thanks to DGM Brasil for their support throughout the planning process! Stay tuned for updates between April 18-20, 2017.


DGM GEA participates in Forest Investment Program's Monitoring and Reporting Stocktaking Workshop

On April 4, Adam Grider of the DGM Global Executing Agency gave a presentation at the Forest Investment Program's Monitoring and Reporting Stocktaking Workshop. This included an overview of the DGM Program and its monitoring and reporting framework. After the presentation, workshop participants discussed the integration of DGM monitoring and reporting into FIP monitoring and reporting, and participants agreed that the FIP would begin including data from the DGM's Semi-Annual Program Reports in its own annual reporting.

pic of Adam.jpg

DGM Indonesia launches!

The DGM Indonesia was launched on March 17, 2017 during the 5th AMAN Congress held in in Tanjung Gusta, North Sumatera. The AMAN Congress was attended by thousands of Indigenous Peoples from the regional and village chapters of national alliance of Indigenous Peoples (AMAN). The DGM Indonesia launching was opened by program introduction from Abdon Nababan – former Secretary General of Indigenous People’s Alliance of Archipelago. This was followed by welcoming speeches from several people. Iwan Gunawan, Senior Natural Resource Management of the World Bank announced the approval of the DGM Indonesia by the World Bank; Mina Setra, a member of the Global Steering Committee, described the role of DGM Global Project; Yunus Ukru, Head of NSC in Indonesia, explained the composition of National Steering Committee; and Suraya Afif, Head of Board of Samdhana Institute, which is the DGM Indonesia National Executing Agency described what type of activities they will be supporting. The launching was marked by the drumming of traditional drum.

The launch is an important milestone for indigenous people and local communities. Land governance in Indonesia is complex, creating barriers for forest dependent groups to defend land rights and livelihoods.  At present, Indonesia has embraced the concept of REDD+ in an effort to achieve its target for GHG emission reductions. REDD+ has creates an opportunity for indigenous peoples and local communities to resolve issues regarding land claims and rights because unclear tenure is seen as an underlying driver of deforestation and forest degradation. The DGM Indonesia project is an opportunity to secure community land titles for indigenous communities. Based on that, DGM Indonesia priority aims to strengthen the capacity of indigenous people and local community’s households to obtain secure and equitable access – and control over – forest and agricultural land, including increasing their livelihood, knowledge and access to participate in the development of related policy at national and local level.

Request for Expressions of Interest - DGM Knowledge Platform and Website Redesign

The DGM Global Learning and Knowledge Exchange project is seeking qualified applicants to redesign the DGM Global website ( and build a password-protected knowledge platform for DGM project participants to share their knowledge and experiences, securely access project resources, and enable more efficient project reporting. The website will also have an external component for sharing information on the activities of the DGM Global Project and Country Projects, country grant-making, and decisions made by the international DGM Global Steering Committee.

Qualified applicants should submit their Expressions of Interest no later than March 17, 2017. Shortlisted respondents will be asked to submit a full proposal once all submissions have been evaluated. Please review the linked Request for Expressions of Interest for further information. 

The DGM hosted 29 IPLCs from Asia in Chiang Mai, Thailand!

The Dedicated Grant Mechanism hosted the third of four international exchanges focusing on IPLC engagement in climate policy and finance!

The Asia Regional Exchange on IPLC engagement in Climate Change and Policy took place from Friday February 10th  until Monday, February 13th, 2017 in Chiang Mai, Thailand.  The objectives of the workshop were to: (1) Strengthen the capacity of Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) to participate in the Forest Investment Program and other REDD+ programs at local, national and global levels. (2) Strengthen the networks and alliances of IPLC organizations within and across Asia region with a view to enhancing their representation and voice in national, regional and global policy fora. Highlights included a deep dive into REDD+, UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement, and the Green Climate Fund; a stakeholder mapping session that identified opportunities and challenges for IPLC engagement in climate related actions, and a field trip to Muang Ang Village to see first hand a REDD+ pilot project

We had 29 representatives from indigenous and local communities from 10 countries throughout Asia! 



DGM indigenous peoples and local community leaders at COP22 in Marrakesh

Indigenous peoples and local community leaders from around the world came to Marrakesh to contribute to the agenda for the action of Paris Agreement. The Dedicated Grant Mechanism for Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities has coordinated the participation of 8 leaders from Asia, Africa and Latin America prepared to focus on providing inputs mainly related to Climate Finance, NDCs, NWP, Adaptation as well as Lulucf, agriculture among other important topics.

In preparation for their participation at COP22, the GSC delegation has actively participated in the DGM Global Workshop on Climate Policy and Finance and the International Indigenous Peoples Forum on Climate Change. GSC members will be sharing the implementation experience in several events in the blue and green zone of COP22, in an effort to demonstrate how IPLCs are strengthening their experiences to contribute for climate action after the Paris Agreement.

Further, the delegation will be meeting daily to exchange information gathered while observing the negotiations and provide updates on decisions made during the sessions relevant to IPLC issues. 

Where to find the DGM at COP22

The DGM will be participating in two side events at the Indigenous Peoples' and Communities Pavilion (Green Zone):

The benefits of global climate funds and the engagement of iplcs in climate action, with case studies from the dgm and the fcpf capacity building in africa

Date: 7 November 2016

Time: 15:45 - 17:15












Date: 14 November 2016

Time: 12:30 - 14:30

The event will present capacity building initiatives for indigenous peoples and local communities to help them gain direct access to climate funds. Speakers from DGM country projects in Peru, Democratic Republic of Congo, Indonesia, and Burkina Faso will explain the background of this initiative and highlight focus areas where communities are benefiting from DGM funding. They will also share the status of projects being implemented in their respective countries and the types of climate-related activities that have been prioritized by communities in these countries.

DGM Global Exchange on IPLC Engagement in Climate Policy & Finance kicks off!

The DGM Global Executing Agency is hosting a Global Exchange on IPLC engagement in Climate Policy & Finance.  This workshop will take place Wednesday, November 2 to Friday, November 4, 2016 in Marrakesh, Morocco; 22 indigenous peoples and local community representatives from 15 countries throughout Asia, Latin America, and Africa have been invited. The objectives of the workshop are to strengthen the capacity of Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) in topics related to UNFCCC, Paris Agreement, NDCs, Climate Finance and the Green Climate Fund and strengthen the networks and alliances of IPLC organizations in order to enhance their contribution in the debate of definition of policies, guidelines and implementation representation and participation in the climate finance arena. More information about DGM global and regional trainings can be found here.

Workshop agenda: EN l ES l FR l PORT

Updates on DGM World Conservation Congress events

The DGM participated in two events at the World Conservation Congress in Hawaii:

Accessing Global Financing: Funding Opportunities for Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities

Room: 314-UNDP Kauhale

Date: 4 September 2016

Time: 08:30 - 10:30

The DGM will join the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the GEF Small Grants Programme (GEF SGP), and the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF), as well as several foundations, at this roundtable focused on sharing financing options for indigenous peoples and local communities, and how financing opportunities can be expanded, increased and enhanced to better target indigenous peoples and local community needs and aspirations. For more information, visit the WCC 2016 site here.


Dedicated Grant Mechanism: Providing indigenous peoples with direct access to climate funds to strengthen conservation initiatives within their territories and communities

Room: 311-10

Date: 4 September 2016

Time: 14:30 - 16:30

This Knowledge Cafe session will provide participants with an opportunity to discuss topics including:

  • What opportunities exist now for IPLCs to access direct funds?
  • What do you think are the most challenging issues/concerns for IPLC in the direct access to funds? (Process, language barrier, need for training – capacity building, etc?)
  • What do IPLCs need to strengthen in their organizations capacities in order to receive and manage funds?

For more information, visit the WCC 2016 site here.

First DGM Regional Training held in Burkina Faso from 19-23 July

The DGM Global Executing Agency, in coordination with IUCN-Burkina Faso (the National Executing Agency for DGM Burkina Faso), hosted the Africa regional training on climate change in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso from the 19th to the 23rd of July, 2016. Thirty-four participants representing 12 African countries and three African IPLC regional networks attended the workshop.

The objectives of the workshop were two-fold: first, to strengthen the capacity of Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) to participate in the Forest Investment Program and other REDD+ programs at the local, national and global levels and second, to strengthen the networks and partnerships of IPLC organizations within and across the region to enhance their representation in regional and global policy fora.

During the workshop, the GEA facilitated a mapping exercise with the workshop participants, which will be used as part of a social network analysis to allow for better understanding of how information and resources move through networks of individuals and institutions in the region.  Participants also learned more about climate change, REDD+, and the UNFCCC, and visited with provincial government officials and local communities in Sapouy (a little more than 100 km south of Ougadougou) to learn more about sustainable forest management techniques being utilized there. On the final day of the training, participants received training on negotiation skills from Samuel Dotse, a civil society advisor for the Ghana delegation in UNFCCC negotiations.

View the workshop materials here: ENGLISH | PORTUGUÉS | FRANÇAIS

For more pictures from the training, visit the DGM Global Facebook page.  Read local coverage of the workshop and opening ceremony on (in French).

DGM Global Steering Committee members and FIP National Focal Points speak at FIP Country Pilot Meeting

Vince McElhinny (left), moderated a panel on the DGM with, from left: Marco Aurelio dos Santor (FIP Focal Point, Brazil), Manuel Aldrete (DGM Global Steering Committee, Mexico), Ibrahim Lankoande (FIP Focal Point, Burkina Faso), Marilen Puguio Arturo, (DGM Global Steering Committee, Peru), Grace Balawag (Co-chair of the Global Steering Committee for the DGM, Philippines).          

Vince McElhinny (left), moderated a panel on the DGM with, from left: Marco Aurelio dos Santor (FIP Focal Point, Brazil), Manuel Aldrete (DGM Global Steering Committee, Mexico), Ibrahim Lankoande (FIP Focal Point, Burkina Faso), Marilen Puguio Arturo, (DGM Global Steering Committee, Peru), Grace Balawag (Co-chair of the Global Steering Committee for the DGM, Philippines).          

As part of the 2016 FIP Pilot Country Meeting in Oaxaca, Mexico, DGM members organized a panel on Monday, June 13, highlighting the “Implementation of the DGM in FIP Pilot Countries.” Moderated by Vince McElhinny from Conservation International, the DGM Global Executing Agency, the panel brought together stakeholders involved in the design and implementation of the DGM at the national and global levels.   The exchange focused on the role of IPLCs in the sustainable management and conservation of forests, particularly in within the FIP investment plan. Speakers discussed progress in establishing the DGM at the national and global levels, the first projects financed by the DGM in Peru and Brazil, and opportunities for collaboration/coordination between the DGM and other FIP-funded projects.

The lively exchange between government, indigenous and local community stakeholders in the DGM highlighted the positive advances, some early lessons, and the overall significance of the IPLC-led initiative within the Forest Investment Program, and beyond.  

Read more about the FIP meeting on the CIF Voices blog here.

DGM Side Event at the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

Indigenous peoples participants from Asia, Africa, Latin America and Russia  at the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues attended a side event hosted by the DGM titled “Illustrating how direct funds governed by IPLCs can contribute to adaptation, mitigation, and conflict resolution” at the UN Headquarters in New York City on May 13, 2016.

The DGM Global Steering Committee (GSC) Co-Chair from the Philippines was present alongside one of the DGM GSC representatives from Peru, and the Director of the DGM Global Executing Agency (GEA). Together, the three presented the objectives and status of the DGM at the international level and at the country level through the example of Peru.

The Co-Chair presented the history, objectives, governance, and implementation structure of the DGM as a unique example of direct financing for Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) in the domain of climate finance. The representative from Peru presented an overview of the progress and challenges encountered in establishing the Peru DGM country project, which along with the DGM Brazil country project, is one of the first two projects to launch on-the-ground activities. In Peru, the first call for proposals led by indigenous peoples in the Amazon to receive sub-grants to fund activities for land titling has recently finished, and sub-grantees will be finalized soon.

The participants raised questions on the consultation process for the projects as the funds come from the World Bank, and the Peru representative explained that in Peru they have proposals that are prepared and requested by indigenous peoples and they implemented their own consultation systems. A woman of Maya people emphasized the need to include elders in the communications process of DGM. Maria Eugenia Choque one of the experts of the Permanent Forum called to work towards an international standard for consultation processes which includes free prior and informed consent (FPIC)..

Presentations were followed by a discussion, led by the GEA Director, to explore topics that could be important to exchange in regional trainings in Latin America, Asia, and Africa; participants from Honduras and Nicaragua stated that they can share with DGM their experience on territorial governance and community bio cultural protocols.  The session closed with the emphasis that, in the words of the Co-Chair, the DGM is designed by IPLCs for IPLCs, and IPLCsstrongly negotiated the DGM with the World Bank  as a pilot and example of how direct financing can increase the participation and contributions of IPLCs.


Posted by the GEA.

DGM Grievance Redress Mechanism and Complaints Procedure is active

In late April, the DGM Global Steering Committee approved a DGM Grievance and Redress Mechanism and Complaints Procedure at their 2nd annual meeting in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo. The operation of a Grievance Redress Mechanism (GRM) is a core accountability commitment of the DGM, and the Global Steering Committee will implement the mechanism in close coordination with DGM National Steering Committees participating in the program.

In the role of Global Executing Agency for the DGM, Conservation International (CI) will facilitate the GRM operation on behalf of the GSC, with Johnson Cerda, the DGM Director for CI, as the primary GEA contact for the receipt of any complaints. Complaints may be submitted by telephone, email, regular mail, text or in person, after which the GEA will follow-up in a timely manner. Eligibility is limited to IPLCs living in regions of tropical forest country that are targeted by the DGM projects in those countries. Complaints related to the country projects may be addressed to the NEA for each country. 

As a decision-making body comprised primarily of indigenous peoples and local communities, the DGM Global Steering Committee operation of a GRM sets an important precedent: Indigenous peoples and local communities across 14 countries will operate a grievance redress mechanism in ways that incorporate customary decision making and conflict resolution procedures already existing in most indigenous territories.  The DGM will also report on the implementation of the GRM procedure at the global and country levels as part of managing the DGM monitoring and evaluation framework.

The GRM procedure was designed in coordination with the DGM National Steering Committees to seek consistency in the design and application of grievance mechanism at the global and country levels of the DGM.  These emerging good practice examples in grievance redress led by indigenous peoples will influence the design of further project-level mechanisms elsewhere.

DGM Brazil:  Centro de Agricultura Alternativa do Norte de Minas (CAA/NM) 

DGM Burkina Faso: IUCN Burkina Faso

DGM Democratic Republic of Congo:  Caritas DRC

DGM Indonesia: Samdhana Institute

DGM Peru:World Wildlife Fund Peru

Written by CI as the Global Executing Agency.