Local efforts around the world to protect our planet are too often underfunded and overlooked. GlobalGiving created the Climate Action Fund to change that. The fund gives the most crisis-affected communities access to a year of steady financial support. Meet the climate champions who are part of our inaugural Climate Action Fund cohort.
Combating climate change requires a wide range of strategies—advocating for legislation, launching social enterprises, raising awareness—all of which are vitally important. Unfortunately, solutions led by the communities most affected by climate change are often the most overlooked. And with the impacts of climate change being felt differently around world, it’s imperative to invest in the local leaders most familiar with the challenges facing their communities.
1. Bringing forests back to the Samburu tribe.
Sadhana Forest Kenya is led by husband-wife duo Yorit and Aviram Rozin. The organization works to sustainably bring back water, forest, and wildlife to degraded lands and helps Indians, Haitians, and Kenyans achieve food self sufficiency. The Climate Action Fund will support the Samburu tribe in Kenya in creating forests of indigenous, food-producing trees that will provide long-term food security while simultaneously curbing climate change. Learn more.
2. Supporting the next generation of environmental justice warriors.
Life In My Days is a youth-led international nonprofit that knows that marginalized society members will suffer the most from climate change. The group started a year-long fellowship program to convene 20 young leaders and apply an environmental lens to their social justice work. One of last year’s fellows remarked, “I wish this program was around 30 years ago when I started my climate change work… Now, I can officially say I do environmental justice work and not just climate change work.” With support from the Climate Action Fund, Life in My Days will be able embark on its second year of the fellowship program. Learn more.
3. Generating economic incentives for farmers to abandon open field burning for greener alternatives.
Around the world, agricultural burning is a major contributor to greenhouse gases. Warm Heart Worldwide launched a “Stop the Smoke!” campaign in rural northern Thailand. What excites Evelind Schecter, the project’s leader, is that “this project is globally replicable. It expands the village co-op model producing biochar products, improves health outcomes, reduces global warming.” With support from the Climate Action Fund, a group of villages in northern Thailand will be able to reduce their impact on global warming while improving farmers’ incomes, the soil, and community health. Learn more.
4. Planting second-generation, climate-adapted corals.
The rainforests of the sea, coral reefs play vital roles in the health of the ocean. Unfortunately, approximately 75% of coral reefs worldwide are currently threatened by a combination of local and global stressors. In and around Fiji, where Corals For Conservation works, over 90% of the corals have bleached and died. Luckily, project leader Austin Bowden-Kerby reports, “We have developed coral gardening techniques that are both effective and low cost.” With support from the Climate Action Fund, the communities Austin works with will restore patches of healthy corals to reefs by planting second-generation, climate-adapted corals of diverse species. Villages in Fiji, Vanuatu, Christmas Island Kiribati, and Tuvalu will benefit. Learn more.
5. Cultivating regenerative food forests in the Amazon.
The Chaikuni Institute works to revitalize ancestral practices in rural Amazonian areas, combining permaculture design and traditional knowledge to train committed local farmers in the indigenous and mestizo communities of the Peruvian Amazon. Executive Director and political ecologist, Stefan Kistler, says, “The philosophy of Akinananti—working together and unity through thoughtful actions in community—is the motivating inspiration behind this program.” With support from the Climate Action Fund, Instituto Chaikuni will bring communities together to engage in an intercultural learning environment while revitalizing ancient practices. By promoting local, regenerative permaculture projects, Stefan looks forward to “transforming communities’ lives and inspiring a new approach to small-scale farming by communities, for communities.” Learn more.
6. Supporting environmental youth leaders to spearhead local adoption of climate solutions.
The Sierra Gorda is an alliance of organizations working towards conservation, restoration, and sustainable development of the Sierra Gorda region. Group leader Pati Ruiz Corzo tells us the region “suffers from deforestation, biodiversity loss, trash mismanagement, and unsustainable agriculture.” The Climate Action Fund will support Sierra Gorda in providing young environmental leaders with leadership training, environmental education, guidance, and a community of fellow young activists through a regional network of EcoClubs. “When youth lead initiatives such as ecosystem restoration and reforestation, they increase community environmental awareness and local resilience to climate change,” says Pati. “The hope is that, as youth become leaders in their communities, they will guide the Sierra Gorda Biosphere Reserve towards sustainable development, holistic land management, and biodiversity conservation.” Learn more.