Widening Informed Stakeholder Engagement for REDD+ in Kenya
The Green Belt Movement was among the participants who participated in Widening Informed Stakeholder Engagement for REDD+ (WISE REDD+) project workshop for Kenya component was held on in May 2014 at Silver Springs Hotel in Nairobi. WISE REDD+ is implemented in five target countries (Costa Rica, Kenya, Peru, Suriname, and Vanuatu) to broaden and strengthen informed stakeholder engagement in national Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation and the role of conservation, sustainable management of forests, and enhancement of forest carbon stock (REDD+) readiness programs, by supporting governments to implement the stakeholder engagement components of their FCPF Readiness Preparation Proposals (R-PPs) and Emissions Reductions Programs (ER Programs).
The project is funded by US Department of State, Conservation International (CI) being the lead agency. In Kenya the project is implemented by International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Office (ESARO) and East African Wild Life Society (EAWLS) in close coordination with REDD+ Coordinating Unit, World Bank and REDD+ Technical Working Groups over two and half year period (December 2013-April 2016). The Kenya component focuses on three broad activities in enhancing stakeholder engagement in: Strategic Environmental and Social Assessment for REDD+, ongoing analytical work related to REDD+ and activities targeted to sensitize various stakeholder on REDD+ processes in the Country.
A diversity of stakeholders who have interest in REDD+ processes in the country attended. They included government officials from different departments including Kenya Forest Service (KFS), Ministry of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) indigenous people (From Sengwer, Elmolo), different natural resource user groups including pastoralists, NGOs and private sector who are involved in REDD+ project development including Wildlife Works.
The REDD focal point for Kenya remarked that REDD+ strategy need to be consultative by engaging all stakeholders. There are many people involved in forestry management and conservation hence need for inclusive participation. He indicated that support from WISE REDD+ must ensure that stakeholder participation is informed, extensive and inclusive. There is need to bring on board marginalized and vulnerable communities who have not been involved in many initiatives. He also mentioned that REDD+ take deliberate steps to caution against unfair resource access rights, interrogate policy and interventions to promote benefits sharing and access rights for communities. In REDD+ process there is some sacrifices and trade off that need to be taken into consideration to make the process successful and facilitate implementation of National Climate Change Response Strategy.