Senior advisor on environmental and climate-related issues at the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad) and Advisor to Norway’s GEF Council Member, Lauren Celine Naville Gisnås, and Norwegian Ambassador Rut Kruger Giverin visited two SGP projects on the Nusa Penida Island of Bali on 24 May 2022. They visited the SukaDanta Organic Farm and the Bukit Keker Learning House in Nusa Penida, where local communities are working with SGP and partners to restore degraded landscapes.
At the Bukit Keker Learning House, local communities are partnering with SGP to establish organic gardens, promote composting, waste management, recycling, and use of biogas systems. The Learning Centre is powered by solar energy and is a space for raising awareness about environmental issues, building local capacity in agro-ecological practices, and sustaining traditional knowledge and culture. The SukaData Organic Farm built an integrated organic farming system which relies entirely on chemical and waste free production.
“We saw an integrated farming system that fully utilize its natural potential. Everything that is planted here uses organic fertilizers, relies on rainwater, and learning is captured and disseminated to other farmers. In the future, we are optimistic that a model like this one is replicated across various regions in Indonesia and beyond to support food needs and improve the well-being of local communities” Lauren said.
“In SukaDanta, we noticed first-hand a promising potential to develop a waste and chemical-free food production system. Moreover, the initiative pioneered an alternative approach to the local economy, which relies heavily on tourism in Nusa Penida” Rut added.
SGP Indonesia National Coordinator Catharina Dwihastarini added that building the farm’s infrastructure relies on a saving scheme that sets aside funds for further investments, as illustrated by a recent plan to build a biogas unit. “Communities that take action together can do a lot of things and can create change on a global level. Hopefully we can continue to expand this work with the knowledge gained from traditional practices,” she said, stressing the importance of relying on bottom-up participatory approaches.
SGP In Indonesia
Since 1992, SGP has been providing financial and technical support to civil society and community-driven initiatives that address global environmental issues while improving local livelihoods in Indonesia. Over the past three decades, SGP Indonesia has supported 502 projects and worked with 200 civil society organizations and local community groups.
The SGP’s Sixth Operational Phase in Indonesia (2017-2022) applied the community-based landscape approach to enhance and maintain socio-ecological resilience of priority landscapes and seascapes in Indonesia. This work builds on the GEF’s focal area strategies as well as the UNDP’s Local Action service offer that supports local actors on three essential solution pathways: empowerment, resilience and investment. To date 95 community-based projects have been completed under this phase, 130,698 hectares of land are under sustainable production and 71,827 hectares of coastal seascapes are being managed as community conservation areas.
Local action = global impact
This year marks the 30th anniversary of SGP, a corporate program of the Global Environment Facility, implemented by the United Nations Development Programme since 1992. Currently active in 128 countries, SGP has supported over 27,000 projects led by local civil society and community-based organizations, including women, Indigenous Peoples, youth, and persons with disabilities, to design and lead actions that address global environmental issues.