Policy for Engaging with Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) - EMACE Foundation of Sri Lanka

Policy for Engaging with Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) - EMACE Foundation of Sri Lanka

1. Introduction

The Environmental Management and Conservation Efforts (EMACE) Foundation of Sri Lanka recognizes the importance of Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) in the sustainable management and conservation of natural resources. This policy outlines our commitment to respectful, inclusive, and beneficial collaboration with IPLCs across Sri Lanka, ensuring their rights, knowledge, and cultures are acknowledged and integrated into our environmental conservation and community development initiatives.

2. Recognition and Respect for Indigenous Knowledge and Rights

  • 2.1 Acknowledge IPLCs' rights to their traditional lands, territories, and natural resources.
  • 2.2 Integrate indigenous knowledge into environmental conservation strategies, valuing it as critical to achieving sustainable development goals.

3. Participatory Approach in Project Implementation

  • 3.1 Ensure IPLCs' active participation in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of projects affecting their lands and livelihoods.
  • 3.2 Facilitate inclusive decision-making processes, ensuring IPLCs' voices are heard and considered in all stages of project development.

4. Capacity Building and Empowerment

  • 4.1 Provide training and resources to IPLCs, enhancing their capacities in environmental management, sustainable economic development, and legal rights.
  • 4.2 Empower IPLCs to lead and sustain initiatives within their communities, promoting leadership and self-reliance.

5. Sustainable Livelihoods and Economic Empowerment

  • 5.1 Develop programs supporting sustainable livelihoods, ensuring IPLCs benefit economically from conservation efforts and other initiatives.
  • 5.2 Tailor initiatives to the unique skills, needs, and environmental contexts of IPLCs, promoting sustainable economic opportunities.

6. Cultural Preservation and Promotion

  • 6.1 Support the preservation and promotion of IPLCs' cultural heritage and practices.
  • 6.2 Document and integrate traditional knowledge into conservation and livelihood strategies, celebrating IPLCs' contributions to environmental stewardship.

7. Advocacy and Legal Support

  • 7.1 Provide IPLCs with legal aid and advocacy support, protecting their rights and interests.
  • 7.2 Assist in securing land rights, combating discrimination, and engaging in policy dialogues to ensure IPLCs' voices are heard at both national and international levels.

8. Monitoring and Evaluation with Community Participation

  • 8.1 Implement participatory monitoring and evaluation mechanisms, actively involving IPLCs to ensure projects meet their needs.
  • 8.2 Adjust strategies based on community feedback, building trust and ensuring the sustainability of initiatives.

9. Implementation and Oversight

  • A dedicated IPLC Engagement Unit within EMACE will oversee the implementation of this policy, ensuring consistent application across all projects and regions.
  • This unit will also facilitate regular dialogue with IPLC representatives, gathering insights and feedback to inform ongoing and future projects.

10. Commitment to Continuous Improvement

  • EMACE commits to regularly reviewing and updating this policy, incorporating lessons learned and feedback from IPLCs to improve our collaborative efforts continually.

11. Conclusion

This policy reflects EMACE Foundation's dedication to fostering respectful, beneficial partnerships with IPLCs, contributing to the sustainable development of Sri Lanka while ensuring the preservation of its rich cultural and natural heritage.