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Equator Initiative Case Study - Camalandaan Agroforestry Farmers’ Association (CAFA)

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The Camalandaan Agroforestry Farmers’ Association works to conserve fragments of lowland limestone forest on the Philippines island of Negros through on-farm tree conservation in the Southern Cauayan Municipal Forest and Watershed Reserve. The association is made up of local farmers who have been allocated rights to plots of land by the government as part of a community-based forest management agreement.
Through a participatory land management plan, the group has divided community land into strict protection zones, publicly-owned multiple-use zones, special management zones, agricultural zones, and built-up areas. In addition to adopting agroforestry practices that improve agricultural productivity and help to actively regenerate the landscape, some members have been deputized as forest wardens – known as the “Bantay Lasang” – to regulate access to forest areas, as well as assisting researchers from Silliman University in biological monitoring. The Equator Initiative brings together the United Nations, governments, civil society, businesses and grassroots organizations to recognize and advance local sustainable development solutions for people, nature and resilient communities. As local and indigenous groups across the world chart a path towards sustainable development, the Equator Prize--issued biennially by the Equator Initiative--shines a spotlight on their efforts by honoring them on an international stage. This project was awarded the Equator Prize in recognition of its contribution to local sustainable development solutions.

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