Gleaning the Wisdom: 7 Diverse Voices for Agroecology

by Swift Foundation on July 20, 2016

Gleaning AFSAIn May, 2016, the AgroEcology Fund in partnership with the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa, hosted a convening with over 70 delegates from 20 countries in Masaka, Uganda. Farmers, social movements, funders, scientists and policy advocates dialogued on amplifying agroecological solutions in the context of a changing climate, land grabs and corporate control of seeds. Click here to read 7 powerful takeaways of #AgroecologyVoices in Masaka.

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The Power of Maps – El Poder del los Mapas

by Swift Foundation on July 20, 2016

Gaia AmazonasMartin von Hildebrand with Swift Foundation grantee, Gaia Amazonas, explains the importance of social cartography as a component in the indigenous territorial management. With the support of Esri, Gordon & Betty Moore, Parks and Gaia Amazonas, indigenous organizations in the Amazon prepare their life plans with the state to participate in the composition of the future of the Amazon. Click here to watch the 3-minute video.

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Seed-Production-report-ACBio-2016-06New Report from Swift grantee, African Centre for Biodiversity! The scoping report looks at key policies, legislation and programmes in South Africa with an emphasis on seed laws and considers the implications for small- scale farmer involvement in this sector and outlines a few projects on community seed production, indigenous crops and black- owned private sector seed production efforts. Click here to read the report. 

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#AgroecologyVoices: Pat Mooney, ETC Group

by Swift Foundation on June 8, 2016

AgroEcology Fund

Pat Mooney believes that agroecology is at the core of food sovereignty. Food systems need to be ecologically sound and affirm the rights of small producers. This is the first short video in a series ‪#‎AgroecologyVoices published by the AgroEcology Fund. Click here to watch the 1-minute video.‬

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Myrna Cunningham Kain: The diversity of rural women

by Swift Foundation on June 8, 2016

Myrna CunninghamToo often development activities meant to assist poor rural women treat them as if they were all the same, says Myrna Cunningham Kain, President of the Centre for Autonomy and Development of Indigenous Peoples. In reality rural women are a diverse population with different cultural backgrounds, knowledge systems and development challenges. Click here to watch this special AgTalks 12-minute video.

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AIDA in Columbia

Major environmental victory after loophole permitting operations in rare ecosystems is declared “unconstitutional”!

Swift grantee, AIDAsubmitted an amicus brief that was quoted quite extensively by the court in its decision to uphold protections for these important high altitude wetlands and freshwater sources. Read article by The Guardian here.

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June 2, 2016

Galina photoOn behalf of the board of directors, I am delighted to announce that Galina Angarova will be joining Swift Foundation in July as our first full-time program officer based out of San Francisco. Her experience and knowledge will enable us to engage in stronger partnerships with our grantees, and to support the implementation of our mission and programs.

Galina’s work with Indigenous Peoples, climate change and the impact of development on local communities strongly aligns with our mission. As a member of the Buryat people, a Russian Indigenous group, Ms. Angarova grew up in a community where Indigenous knowledge guided her life ways and worldview.

Galina Angarova comes to us from her role as Policy and Communications Advisor for Tebtebba, the Indigenous Peoples’ International Centre for Policy Research and Education. Based in New York, she represented the Indigenous Peoples’ Major Group at the United Nations on issues such as the Sustainable Development Goals and the Post 2015 Development Agenda. She led the team of Indigenous experts to review and provide input to ensure safeguards for Indigenous Peoples for the UNFCCC Green Climate Fund.

Previously she worked as Russia Program Director at Pacific Environment.  Galina led international and local grassroots efforts to block pipeline construction in the Altai region of Siberia which threatened sacred natural sites and untouched wilderness. She also led efforts to close a toxic paper mill on Lake Baikal, and to stop plans to construct a hydro-dam that would flood the ancestral lands of indigenous Evenk peoples in Siberia.

Galina received an Edmund S. Muskie Graduate Fellowship from the U.S. Department of State to complete a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of New Mexico in 2002. She currently serves on the board of International Funders for Indigenous Peoples.

Jen Astone, Executive Director
Swift Foundation
www.swiftfoundation.org

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Water is Life. Don’t UnderMine It

by Swift Foundation on March 29, 2016

Water is LifeThis vibrant animation from The Gaia Foundation and animator Ben Pearce takes us on two very different journeys through the water cycle. One shows the life-giving nature of water for everything from forests to frogs. The other reveals the ways in which mining is damaging the water cycle, putting life itself in jeopardy. Click here to watch the 5 minute video.

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Seeds of Justice – In the Hands of Farmers

by Swift Foundation on March 29, 2016

Seeds of JusticeSeeds of Justice follows Ethiopian plant geneticist Dr Melaku Worede’s inspirational work to re-valorise farmers’ knowledge and protect their position as guardians of seed diversity. Treading in Melaku’s footsteps from his youth to the present day through his pivotal experience of Ethiopia’s infamous famine, the film questions one of society’s most flawed assumptions: that scientists hold the answers to ending hunger, not farmers.

Click here to view this 36 minute film by The Gaia Foundation in collaboration with the African Biodiversity Network, GRAIN, MELCA Ethiopia, USC Canada and Ethic-Organic Seed Action.

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SSD-Declaration_Durban-2015-870x489We, participants at the South-South Dialogue, are members of peasant and civil society organisations and concerned individuals from Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe working on issues of food and seed sovereignty, peasants’ control of seed production and exchange, and biodiversity. We gathered in Durban, South Africa 27-29 November 2015 to share information and knowledge, and to come to a common understanding on seed and plant variety protection (PVP) policy and laws and strategies for resistance and alternatives in the global South. Click here to read the entire declaration.

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