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Academic to speak at UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation webinar


An academic from the University of Wolverhampton’s Centre for International Development and Training (CIDT) is speaking at a Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nation webinar.

The FAO are have been running a webinar series since July on Covid-19 and the forest sector. On Wednesday 28 October, 9am – 10am GMT, they will be hosting the session ‘Experience from forest communities of Covid-19 impact’, which CIDT’s Associate Professor of International Development Dr Aurelian Mbzibain will be one of the speakers at.

In the session’s description, the FAO said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has brought to the forefront a number of pressing global challenges.

“Health systems have been stretched thin and lockdown measures have taken a heavy social and economic toll, the devastating impacts of which are being felt by all; from urban residents of densely populated megacities to indigenous peoples living deep in the heart of forests.

“For centuries, forests have served as safety nets for the rural poor. Forest products provide food, income, and nutritional diversity for about 20 per cent (FAO, 2018) of the global population, especially women, children and landless farmers.

“Forest-based communities in turn play a critical role as custodians of the forest and in monitoring resource-extraction activities by third-parties. It is anticipated that these marginalised groups will be disproportionately affected by the pandemic.

“In this context, the FAO-EU FLEGT Programme has partnered with RECOFTC and CIDT to carry out field surveys to document the immediate impact of the pandemic on forest communities in several countries in Asia and Africa, including their perceptions of law enforcement, as critical input towards designing suitable recovery programmes.

“The studies show that forest-based communities play a key role in protecting forest resources and improving the resilience of forest-dependent people in times of crisis.”

The virtual session will:

  • Present findings on the impact of the pandemic perceived at the “forest front” and needs for recovery;
  • Discuss how community forestry can contribute to strengthening and maintaining legality in forest management;
  • Identify concrete actions to support community-led forest monitoring to enhance legal resource extraction practices;
  • Demonstrate how community forestry can improve the resilience of forest-dependent communities during periods of disaster;
  • Emphasise that healthy forest ecosystems and resilient forest-dependent communities should be an important pillar of a green COVID-19 recovery programme.

Places can be booked via the FAO’s website.

For more information please contact the Corporate Communications Team.

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