The Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, Forestry, the Environment, Sustainable Development and Immigration (MAFFESDI), through the National Climate Change Office, is implementing the REDD+ Readiness Preparation Project. REDD+ is a global initiative to combat climate change by reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and by fostering conservation, sustainable management of forests, and the enhancement of forest carbon stocks. The REDD+ Project, through a participatory and inclusive process, will assist Belize in preparing to participate in future REDD+ carbon payment transactions.
One of the mechanisms that are being prepared by the REDD+ Project is a Feedback Grievance Redress Mechanism (FGRM) for the current phase and the implementation phase. FGRMs are channels that citizens use to provide feedback, make complaints, and/or seek redress on matters related to initiatives; in this case, matters related to the REDD+ Project. MAFFESDI has hired Equal Chances @ Green Development (ECGD) to develop the FGRM for the REDD+ Project.
On Wednesday, August 21, 2019, Equal Chances @ Green Development held a workshop with Government of Belize officials to get feedback on existing FGRMs, which will inform the design of a REDD+ Project FGRM. The workshop had fifteen (15) participants from the Department of Rural Development, the Forest Department, the Ministry of Natural Resources, and the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre. Participants discussed the current challenges of existing grievance systems in their respective departments/ministries. In addition, participants provided input for the design of a reliable, accessible, and predictable FGRM for the REDD+ Project. The next step for ECGD is to produce a joint-plan for the REDD+ Project’s FGRM and the accompanying documents for its implementation.