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written by Fiona Foster I December 12, 2011
CSDI has produced a new publication that highlights the role of Communication for Development (ComDev) in Indigenous People’s self-determined development process in Latin America. The publication, entitled ‘’La Comunicación en la Gestión Territorial, el Cambio Climático y el Desarrollo de los Pueblos Indígenas’’ (Communication in Land Management, Climate Change and Development of Indigenous Peoples) is right now only available in Spanish. This document details how the advances of ComDev support the process of empowerment and strengthen the capacities of indigenous organizations, as well as promote sustainable use of natural resources and land management.
The first chapter examines the experience of eight indigenous organizations in different Latin American countries: Bolivia, Peru, Nicaragua, Mexico, Ecuador, Argentina, and Colombia. For Indigenous Peoples, having control over their ancestral territories is fundamental for preserving their traditional social and cultural structures. Communication, and therefore training in different methods and tools of communication, plays and important role in important issues such as promoting indigenous rights, awarding land ownership, and informing others about sanitation and technological training information. This first chapter details the themes of these eight organizations, their problems and limitation as well as their achievements.
The second chapter mentions the international recognition and achievements of ComDev resulting from the input of indigenous organizations at national and international meetings. This publication specifically mentions the two most recent sessions of the UNFPII in 2008 and 2009. During the event in 2009, FAO and CIDOB were able to present their recommendations on communication issues, specifically those related to the Indigenous Peoples Communication and Development Platform in Latin America.
The third chapter presents the results from a Virtual Consultation that was first implemented in March 2008. The objective of the project was an exchange of ideas and information. Several other ComDev projects, from places such as Guatemala, Bolivia and Colombia were able to share project experiences with other communicators and share the vision of communication and development for Indigenous Peoples.
This document concludes with observations and recommendations proposed by CIDOB. They observe that Indigenous Peoples are building an immediate and long-term model of self-development, which is based on the recognition of their environmental and cultural conditions. Communication and media tools can help this development and therefore Indigenous Peoples must be equipped with the knowledge, methods and tools to make their voices heard. Some of CIDOB’s recommendations include continued national and international meetings between indigenous organizations of Latin America, strengthening and expanding technical support, and fostering partnerships between the UNPFII and FAO, IFAD and other development agencies. Further partnerships with the UNPFII would support the existing indigenous organizations as well as ensure the creation of two new platforms in Asia and Africa.