Thursday, April 07, 2011

Indigenous Tribe In Bolivia Wins UN Prize

An indigenous tribe in Bolivia has been awarded the United Nation's Equator Prize for sustained ecological development. The prize is awarded biennially to recognise outstanding community efforts across the tropics to reduce poverty through the conservation.

"The prize is called The Equatorial Prize and it's been instituted by the United Nations, various countries and civil organisations. Its purpose is to recognise the examples of success in the Equatorial region that protect the environment and at the same time reduce poverty," said Yoriko Yasukawa, the UN's coordinator in Bolivia. Nominations for the Equator Prize are accepted from three regions of eligibility within the equatorial belt (23.5 degrees north and south of the equator): Asia and the Pacific, Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean.

The Tsimae Mosetene community was honoured for their work through their regional assembly that works to protect the rights of indigenous people and the environment they live in. The prize money of five thousand dollars was handed to a community representative at a ceremony on Friday (April 1).

The Bolivians received an opportunity to have their story promoted internationally through the prestige of such a win. "We feel very proud to have received the Equator Prize. We are going to continue working to improve and preserve nature in the future because it is what they have always taught us," said community leader Clemente Caiman. It can be noted that, the project has also worked to help produce traditional goods to sell tourists and to include women in territorial administration.

-Nisha Noor