Tucumán, 13 November 2009
About 100 representatives of organizations and communities supported by the Small Grants Program attended a meeting at the "Residencia Universitaria Horco Molle" on November16 and 17 on the occasion of the luncheon of the first publication of SGP in Argentina.
The publication highlights 80 projects that SGP has supported since the beginning of the program in the country in December 2005. All projects meet the objectives of the focal areas identified by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) which funds the program, and fall under UNDP's initiatives to raise awareness and policies that contribute to address climate change by understanding that reducing poverty and tackling climate change go hand in hand.
The Small Grants Program (SGP Argentina), a corporate program of the Global Environment Facility (GEF), implemented by the United Nations Program for Development (UNDP), is aimed to deliver global environmental benefits in the GEF Focal Areas of biodiversity conservation, climate change mitigation, protection of international waters, prevention of land degradation (primarily desertification and deforestation), and elimination of persistent organic pollutants through community-based approaches.
Carlos Felipe Martínez, United Nations Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Argentina highlighted in the publication "UNDP in Argentina strongly supports this program which provides a vehicle for capacity building of the communities located in the Northwest of Argentina, where it has benefited over 2,000 families in over 50 communities, including the indigenous groups Kolla, Atacama, Diaguita and Guarani, as well as smallholders and rural populations living in suburban areas of small towns in this region. For UNDP, climate change is not just an environmental issue but also a development issue. In this regard, we support these initiatives because we know that reducing poverty and tackling climate change go hand in hand."
During the two days of the meeting, representatives of organizations and communities worked in groups and exchanged information regarding lessons learned and best practices. UNDP addressed global and local environmental issues and the importance to include a gender approach.
Hugo Iza, National Coordinator of SGP in Argentina, said: "Given the environmental, social and economic nature of the program, as well as its capacity to strengthen the links with social organizations and institutions while promoting local solutions to global environmental problems, SGP in Argentina is viewed as an opportunity for sustainable development."