The Indigenous Partnership for Agrobiodiversity and Food Sovereignty is supported by The Christensen Fund and hosted by the Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research in Rome, Italy. Its mission is to improve ways of linking indigenous peoples and local communities interested in pursuing self-determined development and to facilitate such communities in taking a leadership role in agrobiodiversity dialogues.
The Indigenous Partnership for Agrobiodiversity and Food Sovereignty – supported by the Christensen Fund – brings together Bioversity International, Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research (PAR), the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) and Slow Food International.
This Indigenous Partnership aims to advocate and strengthen the voice of indigenous groups at policy level and promote their unique wisdom. To do so it unites a range of agriculture, conservation and indigenous organizations with active support from indigenous organizations Tebtebba, La Asociación Andes and Vanuatu Cultural Centre.
There is growing awareness that the well-being of future generations can be sustained and enhanced by nurturing the traditional biological and cultural knowledge systems of indigenous and local communities. In this regard, the Partnership collaborates with leaders and communities in order to identify the best way to serve them, respecting their life styles and sharing their fundamental knowledge with other actors in the global framework of agrobiodiversity and food sovereignty.
The Indigenous Partnership will work to promote a dialogue between indigenous peoples and agricultural research and advocacy groups, act as an instrument for communication between diverse indigenous groups, and eventually develop a mechanism to promote this local knowledge so it can have a place on the agenda of international research and advocacy bodies.
Activities during its first year (2010) will mainly be exploratory and discussion-based, including visits to and with indigenous communities around the world so to determine their needs, in particular where these groups feel they need further advocacy and/or research. In order to maintain that it is the indigenous groups themselves driving the direction of the partnership project, concrete activities for the future will be determined after the first research year.
From 3 -5 May 2010, a Scoping Workshop to establish this new Partnership took place in Pisaq (Cusco), Peru. During the participatory, interactive and indigenous-led workshop 31 participants from around the world joined to discuss the main framework, structure and governance system for the Partnership. Similarly the workshop laid the foundation to foster a proactive alliance between indigenous peoples, local communities and their key allies and to collaboratively create a research and advocacy agenda in support of agrobiodiversity and the regeneration of diverse local food systems and landscapes within the broader framework of food sovereignty.
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The Indigenous Partnership for Agrobiodiversity and Food Sovereignty currently involves Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research (PAR) c/o Bioversity International, Slow Food International and the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) together with active support from indigenous organizations Tebtebba, La Asociación Andes and Vanuatu Cultural Centre.