Newsletter  December,  Issue 2019-3 
Thank you. Your support changes lives.
Dear friends and supporters,
We are coming to the close of a momentous year. Following the release of the IPCC Special Report: Global Warming of 1.5 ºC in late 2018, throughout 2019 people of all ages, creeds and backgrounds rose up to take action in the face of the climate emergency. This strengthened our hope in humanity and belief in our collective power as members of civil society. Yet the year closes with profound disappointment. Despite the ever-growing evidence of the emergency, and the ever-more insistent demands for change from communities and citizens, many of the world’s political leaders have failed—again—to act decisively, to make the changes we all need for our shared home to thrive.
At times like these, it can be tempting to give in to despair. My work for Global Diversity Foundation keeps that despair firmly at bay. I witness how collective action makes change for the better on a daily basis: through the immense dedication of our community researchers, communications experts, project managers and researchers, in close collaboration with our fantastic partners. I see how the tenacious and loving actions of a small group of committed individuals can have magnifying impacts over time.
The stories we share here represent only a small proportion of the work we do every day; they offer just a snapshot of our growing impact. We hope they inspire you to end this year and begin the next year firm in the belief that you are part of a movement helping to make the planet and the leaders of tomorrow healthier, more resilient and fully supported in their work to sustain us.
Wishing you all a hope-filled and peaceful 2020,
Emily Caruso, GDF U.K. Director
In October, 18 Semester at Sea university students participated in a field programme in Morocco to learn about local biodiversity and Indigenous Amazigh communities in the High Atlas. They spent four days actively engaging in participatory conservation actions such as seed planting and gardening workshops with the communities we work with, including the girls at Dar Taliba. Read more >>
In December, we partnered with Deafal ONG for the first edition of our Farmer Field Schools. Over two days, we organised targeted trainings in Imegdal and Aït M'hamed to support Amazigh farmers to enhance their knowledge of innovative agroecological approaches on soil fertility, while maintaining their traditional practices. The second edition of the Farmer Field Schools is planned for April 2020 and will focus on plant nutrition and health.
The 153 girls at Dar Taliba started their weekly trainings in October, with the support of our local partner and permaculture experts from Radiant Design. Over the past three months, they’ve planted many vegetables, including carrots, beans, peas and turnips, prepared compost and an organic anti parasite treatment for plants, and learned about mulching techniques and their benefits.
As part of the GlobalGiving Year-End campaign, our goal is to raise $2,000 for the 153 Dar Taliba students and their school garden before the New Year. Your donation will support continued trainings in the garden, the purchase of materials and seeds, and help to underwrite admission fees to make secondary education accessible to even more girls from the High Atlas in the next school year.
Promoting sustainable land-use practices in the Mediterranean
In October, GDF partnered with the Global Environments Network (GEN) and IUCN Med to host M6 Partners as part of the Mediterranean Community Exchange. The exchange promoted dialogue, exchange and collaboration on the topic of integrated biocultural diversity monitoring across M6 pilot sites and overarching initiatives. Watch the video below on the event.
As part of the M6 Partnership, GDF contributed to a report on the importance of mobile pastoralism in landscape conservation in the Mediterranean: Mediterranean Landscapes: The state of (mobile) pastoralism in five pilot sites. The report was produced by the Yolda Initiative.
What is the M6 Partnership? "We are all working together towards the maintenance of cultural landscapes that are essential for biodiversity.” Watch this video on efforts by partners across the Mediterranean. 
In other news from the M6 Partnership, Sophia Sifaki took the prize with ‘The Treasure’ in the 2019 Rooted Everyday #MedStoryPrize competition. Sophia's story spins an enchanting conservation tale in which a young doctor arrives on the small Greek island of Lemnos ready to serve the diverse population, having been charged by her benefactor to discover the hidden treasure of the island. Moroccan writer Abdelhakim Barnous received a Highly Commended Award for his story, ‘The Shepherd’. Read their stories, and more, in the resulting eBook.
These initiatives were carried out under the umbrella of the MAVA-funded M6 Partnership on Mediterranean Cultural Landscapes.
Sign up here to receive updates on the upcoming Rooted Everyday #MedFoodHeroes campaign that celebrates tasty produce, recipes and traditions from the Mediterranean.
Promoting social and environmental justice, strengthening wellbeing at scales from local to global: the Global Environments Network (GEN)
2019 was a busy year for GEN: we supported the alumni-led organisation of the second Latin American Academy (ALLSA), held in Peru, and the first Mediterranean Community Exchange in Morocco, and partnered with inspiring projects that support flourishing diversity and are working toward fairer food and farming systems. Looking ahead, in early 2020, Camille Barton—founder of the Collective Liberation Project—will be working with GEN to help design, co-facilitate and publish part of GEN’s ambitious 2020-2021 Toolkit programme; exploring the theme of Grief and Resilience within social and ecological change.
Seventeen young Latin Americans gathered in Peru from 14 to 25 September for the Latin American Academy for Food Systems Resilience (ALLSA 2019), building their leadership skills through processes of reconnection, and increasing their knowledge for the resilience of food systems. Read more >>
In September, GEN partnered with the Flourishing Diversity Series in leading the Gaia Spirit Movement and helping facilitate sessions at the Flourishing Diversity Summit: a unique opportunity to listen, dialogue and participate with Indigenous leaders from across the world. Read more >>
In a second partnership, GEN worked with the Landworkers’ Alliance to facilitate a day of Movement Building Workshops connected to the London Farming, Food and Climate Justice March held in October. GEN Member Coordinator Corinne Cariad, who joined our GEN team in September, writes about her experience on facilitating networking at the event.
Share the word. The deadline to apply is fast approaching!
Themes that will be addressed at the seventh Global Environments Summer Academy (GESA 2020) include effective and non-violent communication and mobilisation within community engagement; working with trauma, grief and tools for deep adaptation in the face of ecological crisis; overcoming oppression and addressing race, gender and difference in our lives and work; and new economics, where participants will explore emerging economic models that balance essential human needs with planetary boundaries.
GEN Alumni in Action

Last month in Malaysia, Aini Hasanah binti Abd Mutalib (GESA 2018 alumna), co-founder of the Malaysian Primatological Society, was delighted to be part of the team who organised a week-long series of events centred around primates. The event drew together local residents, students from local schools and Universiti Sains Malaysia with NGOs and primate specialist Dr Jane Goodall. Sessions included film screenings, lectures, sessions on conservation optimism and activities to engage young people in conservation. Read Aini’s story here.

Earlier this year, four alumni from GESA 2014 and 2018 convened at Territories of Life: Areas conserved by Indigenous peoples and local communities’ event, Valsain, Segovia Province of Spain. Emma Courtine writes about their experience.
For more on our work in the Mediterranean and around the world, visit our websites—Global Diversity Foundation and Global Environments Network—and sign up for our newsletters. Also, please join us on social media for more regular updates! To support our work, you can donate to our online fundraising campaigns or directly to Global Diversity Foundation by PayPal, credit card or cheque.
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