LAC-Net Board Meeting: Name Change, New Members
During the last LAC Regional Model Forest Network Board of Director’s meeting held November 14 to 17, 2007 in the Atlántida Model Forest, Honduras, members approved a resolution to change the current name to the Ibero-American Model Forest Network (IAMFN). This change had been under discussion since Spain’s inclusion in the regional network. The name change will occur over time in the documentation.
In addition, four new Model Forests were unanimously accepted at the LAC Board of Directors’ meeting in Honduras: the Yoro Model Forest, Honduras, San Pedro Model Forest, Argentina, Yague del Norte Model Forest, Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. Cuba was accepted as a member country. The regional network’s ongoing expansion will be the central theme of the next Board of Directors’ meeting to be held in Canada following the IMFN Global Forum in June, 2008.
CMFN Funding in Place
Natural Resources Canada-Canadian Forest Service and the Canadian Model Forest Network (CMFN) have signed a contribution agreement worth $1.5 million CAD over five years. The CMFN, an independent non-profit organization, qualifies for the funding under Canada’s new Forest Communities Program (FCP). Funding for the agreement extends to 2012.
With this funding secured, the CMFN plans to take on a leadership role in the sharing and distribution of tools, practices and knowledge, that have been and will be developed to aid rural, forest reliant communities in Canada and around the world adapt to the changes that are occurring in the forest sector.
The CMFN is planning to hold its next meeting of the Network in February 2008. A key focus of the meeting will be discussions with Canadian Forest Service officials on opportunities for strategic, Network-wide initiatives under the Forest Communities Program.
Advisory Committee Established for the Regional Model Forest Network-Asia
On October 19, 2007, representatives for the Regional Model Forest Network-Asia (RMFN-Asia) met in Chiang Mai, Thailand, on the margins of an FAO event. While Model Forests in the region have been meeting as a group for several years, a formal governance structure was not in place. The group, comprised of Model Forest and national-level representatives from China, India, Indonesia, Philippines and Thailand, agreed to form an RMFN-Asia Advisory Committee. The Committee would define strategic directions for the RMFN, identify strategic partners, examine new members to the Network, and facilitate networking between Model Forests (including identifying thematic areas for regional-level programming).
CUSO Cooperants Finish Placements with LAC-Net
Ms. Christina Polzot and Mr. Parker Gray have returned to Canada after successful placements in two LAC-Net regional sites. Ms. Polzot worked for more than two years on the establishment of the Atlántida Model Forest in Honduras. Mr. Gray supported effective resource mobilization for Model Forests and for LAC-Net. Both completed their tasks during the month of November, 2007. We appreciate the valuable collaboration of these two Canadian cooperants and wish them success in their future projects. We want to take this opportunity to also express our appreciation for CUSO’s enormous support to Model Forests of the region.
Cameroon Model Forest Representative Attends 6th CEFDHAC Conference in Gabon
Meetings for the sixth Conference on Central African Moist Forest Ecosystems (CEFDHAC) were held from 20–22 November2007 in Libreville, Gabon. The central theme was: FOREST RESOURCES IN CENTRAL AFRICA: SOURCE OF WEALTH OR POVERTY?
CEFDHAC is the only sub-regional institution with an official mandate from the governments of Central African countries to hold semi-annual meetings of all of stakeholders involved in sustainable forest management and biodiversity conservation. It is directly under the direction of COMIFAC (Commission for the Forests of Central Africa).
Dja et Mpomo Model Forest representatives attended the conference because the experiences of the first two Cameroonian Model Forests—the Dja et Mpomo and the CampoMa’an —can be easily linked to forest governance and community development issues within COMIFAC and NEPAD (New Partnership for Africa’s Development) thanks to promotional support to be offered under the CEFDHAC framework.
The Dja et Mpomo Model Forest has been registered for the first time with CEFDHAC, The World Conservation Union – Bureau régionale pour l’Afrique centrale (IUCN-BRAC) and COMIFAC as a new structure for good governance of resources and forestry revenues in the Congo Basin. As such, it has entered the sub-regional strategic consultation arena. The Model Foresthas also positioned itself to help facilitate and further develop Model Forests in the Congo Basin in general and in Cameroon in particular.
US Forest Service Announces International Programs 2008
The US Forest Service International Programs and its partners have announced three international training opportunities for 2008. The seminars and workshops stimulate deliberations and problem solving for issues related to two unique areas of natural resource management. The US Forest Service supports the seminars and workshops with the idea of engaging a global network of natural resource managers in a productive, interactive dialogue on common challenges and solutions.Invited participants are selected to reflect the widest possible geographic distribution and diversity of experience.
Program activities will take advantage of the experience of the participants, as well as the unique heritage of the field locations included in each seminar. Two of the programs are intensive, interactive seminars designed for English–speaking senior natural resource management professionals who desire to improve their managerial capabilities and administrative skills. In addition, there is a Spanish-language based field course on protected area management.
Participants who have their own financial sponsorship are invited to get more information and apply via the website. Please visit the website for application details as well as updated tuition costs and deadlines.