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Mission and Vision

The Global Forest Coalition campaigns through its broad membership and in coordination with other allies, alliances, movements and networks, to support the struggles of Indigenous People and local communities by bring their views, positions and proposals to the forefront of local, national, and global forest-related decision-making processes.

Mission

The mission of the Global Forest Coalition is to advocate for the conservation and restoration of forest ecosystems, through defending and promoting respect for the rights, territories, traditional knowledge and sustainable livelihoods of the Indigenous Peoples and local communities that co-exist with them.

Vision

Protect real forests, and the people dependent on them. GFC strives for a world where forest ecosystems are protected through sustainable co-existence with the Indigenous Peoples and local communities that call forests home, and where the specific rights, roles, needs and aspirations of women are central to this.

Protect the rights of forest peoples. The rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities must be fully respected and upheld in all forest-related policies, and customary systems of forest governance and conservation, and the territorial rights to land of Indigenous Peoples and local communities, should be fully respected.

Halt deforestation and biodiversity loss. Governments worldwide should comply with their commitment to halt deforestation and forest biodiversity loss, at the latest by 2020. The privatisation, commercialisation and deterioration of public policy, through public-private partnerships and other schemes, should be halted, and governments should guarantee the protection of human rights, particularly for vulnerable groups.

Plantations are not forests. Forest conservation should focus on the preservation, restoration and sustainable use of forests, using indigenous species. Whereas, tree plantations must be excluded from the definition of forests especially where they are invasive, non-native, commercial and/or monocultures, and thus they are also excluded from subsidies and other forms of financial support intended for reforestation and afforestation.

Forests are not a commodity to be traded, forests are for life. The impacts of the consumption of wood and other forest products must be reduced to a minimum, with sustainable local use governed by local conservation practices prioritised instead.

Forests are key to the climate crisis. Forest protection and restoration should be placed at the heart of climate regulation, to mitigate against the impacts of climate change and to protect biodiversity and halt desertification.

Biodiversity through cultural diversity. The cultural diversity and traditional knowledge of Indigenous Peoples and local communities is vital to biodiversity conservation and the protection of forest ecosystems and should therefore be protected, with an emphasis on inter-generational dialogue and the crucial role of young people.

Objectives

  • To increase public and political awareness of the importance of combating the real, direct and underlying causes of deforestation and forest degradation.
  • To ensure that the rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities are defended and guaranteed at the territorial level and in national, regional and international policies on forests and other related areas, including biodiversity and climate change.
  • To protect and promote customary systems of forest governance and conservation, and the traditional knowledge of Indigenous Peoples and local communities, to ensure the health of forests and forest biodiversity.
  • To ensure that community conservation and restoration initiatives have appropriate organisational capacity, and receive sufficient legal, political, technical and financial support.
  • To increase the capacity of local communities, Indigenous Peoples, social movements and women’s groups to analyse and address the social and environmental impacts of market-based conservation schemes, such as the false solutions that are being promoted within climate policies.
  • To facilitate and support regional and international alliances of organisations and communities working to defend forests and forest peoples.