Community Summit : 15 - 23 September 2010


Staged during the International Year of Biodiversity, and held in parallel with the 2010 Millenium Review Summit and the sixty-fifth session of the United Nations General Assembly, the Community Summitgathered representatives from 20 countries travelling to NYC to receive the Equator Prize, share best practices, inform policy, celebrate successes, receive capacity building training and address common challenges on the Biodiversity local agenda.


The Community Summit was held from 15 - 23 September 2010 at the UN Church Center in NYC. Attended by 43 individuals among local community leaders, facilitators and volunteers the Community Summit succesfully achieved it's primary objectives:

a) to create a venue for best practice peer-to-peer exchanges

b) provide access to decision-makers and policy-making processes;

c) deliver development and capacity building training.


See, in the next few pages how these objective were succesfully achieved and documented. For full coverage of the Community Summit, please see the daily journals   and photo diaries.

Day 1 - September 15

After the safe arrival of community participants from 24 countries* to the Community Summit, an introduction session got underway. The objective was to introduce communities to the Equator Initiative and to each other. A team of seven facilitators—comprised of Alejandra Pero of the Civil Society Organization Division of the UNDP, Colleen Corrigan of the UN Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre, Dominique Bikaba of Pole Pole Foundation, Tran Triet of Phu My Wetland Conservation, Erika Vohman of Equilibrium Fund, Ana Maria Currea of Global Environment Facility's Small Grants Programme, and Ian Nigh of Integrative Eco-Social Design—were on hand to guide the event.

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Day 2 - September 16

The facilitators began by giving a recap of what was covered the previous day, and then led a session to prepare for the CNN journalist's presentation in the afternoon, covering issues such as what CNN expected from community participants and how can participants make sure their message is spread throughout the world. Next, community participants gave presentations on their community work, which continued later in the afternoon.



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Day 3 - September 17

The morning began with each small group presenting their ideas for the Community Statement, a message to policy makers and to the United Nations to be read at the awards dinner. The six presentations had various themes, ranging from the importance of linking poverty reduction and sustainable conservation, to the critical task of working with local governments and politicians in home communities. The key ideas presented were posted in the meeting room, and throughout the day, the community participants read through and marked the ideas they find most useful.


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Day 4 - September 18

The day began with a summary of the previous day's events. This recap allowed the community representatives to reflect on the accomplishments and learning opportunities achieved thus far at the Summit. The participants expressed the new skills they intend to incorporate into their projects, from focusing on technology in environmental protection to the importance of innovation and taking advantage of local resources.



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Day 5 - September 20

Today, the community participants from Madagascar and Kenya gave presentations on their biodiversity conservation work. Next, a discussion regarding revisions to the Community Statement was held, where the facilitators identified some gaps including the role of women, climate change, the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD), and the Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention (C169).



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Day 6 - September 21

The day began with people sharing their impressions of the previous evening's Equator Prize Award Ceremony, held at the American Museum of Natural History. The night had been a tremendous success—the community representatives had the opportunity to meet and talk with guests from various NGOs and UN agencies, as well as delegates and heads of state from several national governments. Some community members mentioned the coverage their award had received in their national media, highlighting how important this was for advocacy and for raising their profiles within their home countries.


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