Objective of side event: to showcase UNDP's contribution to the implementation of the UNCCD through sustainable development, and to explore how this work promotes socio-economic and ecological resilience.
Thematic focus: Vulnerability Reduction and Resilience Building.
Most drylands communities practise local livelihoods activities adapted to their distinct environments. They are largely rural dwellers dependent primarily on rain fed crop agriculture and livestock for both food and income. In the face of climate change, increasing climatic variability and extreme weather events are threatening their traditional farming and livestock-raising practices, leading to increased desertification, land degradation, droughts and other natural disasters. New challenges over natural resources are also emerging and increasing, e.g., conflicts related to competing uses, tenure and demographic pressures leading to environmental migrants, etc.
Over the years UNDP has contributed to the goals of the UNCCD to fight poverty and to bring the concerns of the people of the drylands to the centre of the development agenda. The commitment to support development in the drylands is inherent in UNDP’s overall goal to fight poverty, reduce vulnerability and build resilience as a basis for enhancing livelihoods. This is reflected in the organization’s various programmes and activities at country level, channelled through various frameworks and programmes, including the Integrated Drylands Development Programme, the UNDP GEF land degradation window, etc.
This side event aims to show case how UNDP is promoting and building resilience of drylands communities and contribute to the ongoing debate on why the commitment to drylands development is extremely important in the view of increasing climatic variability, climate change and high poverty levels in the region. By presenting various time-tested practices, the event intends to identify the key opportunities for long term livelihoods improvements in drylands communities. The side event will be divided into 4 parts. Part 1 will focus on resilience and how this is linked to UNDP's mandate. Part 2 will showcase some country specific examples of approaches UNDP has applied to build resilience in the drylands. Part 3 will be open discussion and Part 4 will be the launch of UNDP's publication on lessons learnt.