Thursday, April 23, 2009

Indigenous People's Global Summit - Thursday - Donor Sector

Again, this is written on the fly for immediate posting. Spelling and names are not necessarily all they should be. It's bits and pieces, not a holistic view. I'll add some photos and videos later if I can.

Ken Wilson, Christensen Fund - Amount of money to indigenous peoples increased from $10 - $40 million from 2005 and 2007. About 80,000 foundations in the US and they give about $80 billion so this is a very tiny fraction. We look a little differently, because we want to see how much actually goes to indigenous people, not to organizations that operate in their name.
Environmnet - 80% plus - is the area that they coordinate with. Recognition of the leadership that indigenous people have in global warming. Fairly well balanced in Asia, Africa, and South America, less in Arctic.
Constraints - foundations are creatures of Western Society. Have difficulty being holistic. Divide the world up. Created why powerful wealthy people. Top down outlook. Staffs had very little experience with lives of indigenous peoples. Have difficulty creating mechanisms that are flexible.
We have lost large proportions of our investments. McArthur foundation not here because of travel restrictions. Two have joined the Obama administration - EPA - head of international affairs.

James Stauch, Gordon Foundation Canada - Connecting Northern peoples with the public policy process at all levels. Most grants go directly to first nations governments, inuit organizations. Culturally relevant policies, emerging generation of leaders, research that is community policy related. Storytelling is important. It moves people more than facts. Supporting non-state actors.
As the ice melts in the Arctic - bizarre consequences of nation states jockeying about their role in the open sea. Canada, for instance, is talking about sovereignty. Need to talk about who is really using the land.
We shouldn't be doing nuclear, biofuels, wind, all of these things have negative consequences on Indigenous people. Listing polar bears as endangered species affects programs already in place. We should be talking about who is creating the carbon.
If going to support only one thing - support youth working with elders.

Claire Greensfelder, The Lia Fund
Small foundation - founder left $5 million in her estate, mostly in real estate, and our job is to give away the money : arts, access to holistic health and healing, climate solutions. 50% of funding toward climate solutions - about $2.5 million. Interdisciplinary projects.
Concerns: social and economic justice , diversity, equity, non-violence

Hope that my talk here will inspire others to copy the Lia foundation in their organizations - founding small foundations.

Ann Henshaw, Oak Foundation, family foundation centered in Switzerland. Oak believes that indigenous people around the world have a unique understanding of climate change and has important things to tell the conference in Copenhagen.

David Secord, Wilburforce Foundation, Pacific Northwest, Our board has come to understand how to do our core mission
As place based funder, landscapes do not just have animals, also have people, it's obvious, but it's new
Lots of conversations on climate change - realizing how climate change impacts our interests
More and more recognition that creative and novel partnerships are essential to have outcome producing strategies.

Christensen Fund, 1957 Palo Alto,California, 2003 new mission around biocultural diversity, $50,000,000 in grants through 5 regional and 2 global programs.
Five regions with high cultural and biodiversity: Greater Southwest, Central Asia,

Kai Lee, Conservation and Science Program, Packard Foundation
$100 million in grants every year. Worked closely with indigenous people over the years.

Indigenous Peoples Global Summit on Climate Change (click link for all the posts on the summit)

OK, I'll try to get some pictures and video up later. This panel is just closing down, there's no time for questions from the audience.

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