If Not Us Then Who? recently travelled to the Ford Foundation offices in New York to have our strategy meeting with the indigenous networks that define our priorities for the year. In a room full of researchers, communicators, funders and indigenous leaders we looked at the major events we will engage in to support the goals defined by the commonly agreed indigenous demands.
The key question was how do we use a global communication strategy to build the network and influence debate internationally and locally? Using social media, targeted video content, events and by engaging with influencers there were some wonderful examples of what worked in 2016 from impactful organisations like Media Ninja, Burness Communications, Global Witness, Purpose, Prisma, FERN, WRI and the Rights and Resources Institute. We also examined one of our major collaborative successes last year with the #guardiansoftheforest bus tour, a 7 city European tour of Indigenous leaders and young communicators. This year we want to reach further, be more engaging and inspire new awareness. We need to increase the ability for indigenous and local communities to engage in decision making, to secure land rights and to stop the criminalization and murder against communities on the front line of the fight to protect forests.
Our plans include supporting the Terra Livre event in Brazil, creating a range of training opportunities for young indigenous communicators and then developing innovative and exciting events to stimulate debate, news and policy engagement at the Global Climate Action Summit in California and at the UNFCCC in Poland.
This year should be a really exciting time to follow our network – watch this space for regular updates.