Adapting Locally to Secure Sustainable Futures: Selected Case Studies from the UNDP GEF Community-Based Adaptation Project

This report illustrates examples of community transformations that can take place as a result of community efforts to sustainably adapt to climate change impacts. It also highlights the socio-economic and community mobilization benefits that can be achieved through community-based adaptation. These positive results are demonstrated through the adaptation measures implemented by the CBA pilot projects, which were aided by increased awareness, knowledge and capacities in 7 of the 10 participating countries of the SPA CBA project.

For many communities, existing problems associated with unsustainable development practices and frequent climate change-induced events provided a natural starting point for the pilot adaptation measures. It was through the implementation of the projects that communities improved their skills, increased their knowledge on climate change and its impacts, and improved their ability to adapt in a sustainable way. Incrementally, the web of activities surrounding the implementation of the measures developed indirect capacities such as community mobilization, financial management and entrepreneurship, gender mainstreaming and social inclusion. When combined, these increased capacities produced results and benefits in terms of natural resources (agriculture, biodiversity and water), socio-economic development, gender equality and community development. 

The seven case studies in this report were assembled and summarized to provide an overview of the CBA pilot project activities, and what local communities did to adapt to climate change.  Over a span of 12-20 months, communities learned how to integrate adaptation practices into their daily lives. The new habits that were formed protect them from climate change impacts today, but also lay a resilient foundation for future sustainable development. Ongoing analysis, monitoring and evaluation of the communities’ social, cultural, economic and political conditions were undertaken throughout the duration of the project. It served as a continuous feedback that guided the knowledge-and experience-sharing sessions to ensure the successful implementation of the adaptive measures.


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