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Strengthening indigenous peoples’ communities and their organizations.

Indigenous and tribal peoples and ethnic minorities are among the poorest and most marginalized people in the world. They are disproportionately represented among the rural poor. Many of the poorest groups of indigenous peoples are difficult to reach through mainstream development programmes.

Several recent studies show that in some parts of the world, the poverty gap between indigenous peoples and other rural populations is increasing. Indigenous peoples are often disempowered by a lack of recognition of their cultural and socio-political systems. This undermines their social capital and their ability to shape their future. 

The Indigenous Peoples Assistance Facility is an innovative funding instrument that indigenous communities can use to find solutions to the challenges they face. The objective of the Facility is to strengthen indigenous peoples’ communities and their organizations. It finances small projects that foster self-driven development within the framework of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The Facility then generates lessons learned and approaches for replication and scaling up.

IPAF supports projects designed and implemented by indigenous peoples’ communities and their organizations through small grants of up to US$50,000. Supported projects build on indigenous peoples’ culture, identity, knowledge and natural resources.

IPAF is co-managed at the regional level by indigenous peoples’ organizations and is governed by a six-person board made up of four indigenous peoples’ representatives from Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, East Asia and the Pacific, and South Asia; one representative from UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) and one representative from IFAD.


Related publications

Seeds of innovation: Tapping into the knowledge of indigenous peoples

únor 2015
The Indigenous Peoples Assistance Facility (IPAF)1 finances small projects designed and implemented directly by indigenous peoples’ communities and their organizations. The projects are selected through global calls for proposals, based on a competitive process. In managing the IPAF when it was established in 2007, IFAD realized that the Facility was not only a grant-making mechanism, but it also contained a wealth of knowledge derived from the project proposals themselves. With its limited funding, the IPAF can support only a small number of these proposals. Thus, a knowledge-harvesting mechanism was set up with funding from the Initiative for Mainstreaming Innovation (IMI). 
LANGUAGES: English

Learning by working together - Microprojects financed through the Indigenous Peoples Assistance Facility (IPAF)

duben 2010
Since IFAD began operations in 1978, it has supported, as part of its mandate to reduce poverty, many rural development programmes in which indigenous peoples have played an important role as stakeholders. Yet, during the early decades of its existence, IFAD’s experience in many cases showed limited impact on indigenous peoples because project design and implementation placed indigenous peoples in a broader and undifferentiated category of poor rural people and did not consider the sociocultural dimension of their livelihood strategies. Time and experience (including failures) and the evolving international framework led to the realization of the need for a better knowledge of indigenous peoples in all their diversity. This would allow a deeper understanding of their problems and their perceptions of poverty, and possible ways to tack
LANGUAGES: English, Spanish

The Indigenous Peoples Assistance Facility: A promising new link between grass-roots indigenous peoples organizations and the international community

duben 2016
Indigenous and tribal peoples and ethnic minorities are disproportionately represented among the rural poor. Many of the poorest communities of indigenous peoples are difficult to reach through mainstream development programmes. Several recent studies show that the poverty gap between indigenous peoples and other rural populations is increasing in some parts of the world. In addition, indigenous peoples generally score lower on the Human Development Index – the measure of life expectancy, literacy, education and standard of living for countries worldwide. This is particularly true for indigenous women.