WWF Nepal works with a range of conservation partners across all levels focusing on accountability of duty bearers and empowerment of right holders. However, limited human resources and institutional capacity among community based institutions has proven to be a major challenge.
In this regard, WWF Nepal though a variety of interventions, works towards improving environmental and institutional accountability among duty bearers towards right holders at the community-based organizations level. These right holders comprise primarily of poor and vulnerable groups and Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities, whereas interventions focus on access to conservation benefits and involvement in decision making, monitoring, and management.
A major challenge in WWF Nepal's initiatives to promote good governance has been the meaningful engagement of marginalized groups; including Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities and other vulnerable groups, in areas of natural resource planning, management, and decision making. WWF Nepal therefore consistently works to empower these communities across social, educational, cultural and economic areas to boost local capacities.
Mainstreaming cross cutting issues including biodiversity, climate change, environment, and gender and social inclusion into development and cross sectoral policies and plans requires close coordination amongst all these stakeholders at vertical; establishing connections among the three tiers of government, and horizontal levels; working with different ministries and stakeholders across all three tiers.
MAINSTREAMING CONSERVATION AT LOCAL LEVELS
The Government of Nepal through its local governments have invested a significant proportion of their annual budgets in infrastructure development. Unfortunately, these development plans do not adequately include environmental factors. To align biodiversity and environmental agenda with development ones, it is imperative to develop close working relationships, and support capacity building at the newly formed local government levels.
In this backdrop, and as stipulated under the Local Governance Operationalization Act, 2017, local governments are expected to implement various environment related activities, including watershed, biodiversity, disaster, climate change, among others. To facilitate implementation of these activities, WWF supports the various policies and legal framework processes as mentioned above, alongside providing support for capacity development training for effective execution of these legal instruments.