Representatives from the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), Food First Information and Action Network (FIAN), Trust for Community Education and Outreach (TCOE)  will be amongst 70 delegates attending Masifundise’ workshop on the  FAO Tenure Guidelines.

Civil Society and grassroots organisations representing SMALL scale producers, fishers, peasants, farmers, will come together to increase their knowledge and share experience relating to tenure and the governance of tenure in their communities.

Taking place from 8 to 11 June, in Cape Town, the workshop will encourage the increase of the use of the Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests (VGGT) among civil society and grassroots organisations in South Africa.

SMALL scale producers, fishers, peasants, farmers, indigenous peoples and local communities face insecure tenure, increased poverty and food insecurity due to land and ocean grabbing, but this can all change, should governments all over the world, and in South Africa agree to implement the VGGT.

The VGGT, which were adopted by the FAO in 2012, seek to address and redress the imbalances created by insecure tenure regulations which cause landlessness, poverty, hunger and insecurity.

“We hope to raise awareness amongst community organisations about the Tenure Guidelines and also to have communities come up with their own strategies of how they can use the Guidelines for their benefit” said programme manager, Mandla Gqamlana.

Important objectives of the workshop include:

  1. To raise the awareness of small-scale fishers, small scale farmers and other rural landless communities about the contents of the VGGT.
  2. Enable participants to identify their tenure systems and to understand their tenure rights.
  3. Facilitate a process whereby participants can unpack how policies, processes and current governance frameworks challenge local ideal tenure arrangements.
  4. Facilitate a process whereby community members can establish a plan of action to mobilise for change using the tenure guidelines as a tool for change.

Participants of the workshop will be encouraged to come up with strategies of how they can use their tenure rights to secure food and better their community livelihoods.

“We are pleased that we can invite our communities to learn more about the governance of their land and natural resources” said Masifundise’s Sithembiso Gwaza.

“We are hoping that this workshop will help people know how to access natural resources that belong to them as Masifundise our aim to empower those who have experienced injustices that result to them having poor livelihoods and suffer from poverty,” Mr  Gwaza added.

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