RECOFTC in Vietnam
In 2004, RECOFTC started in-country activities in Vietnam. Today, we have several projects and partnerships that aim to build the skills and knowledge needed to engage in the country's community forestry frameworks and projects.
RECOFTC provides training in natural resource management to Vietnamese mid-career professionals. To date, we have trained more than 200 Vietnamese stakeholders in participatory approaches, social forestry, policies of community-based forest management, and REDD+ developments.
Forest Governance Learning Group, September 2006 – December 2013
RECOFTC is the national coordinator for the Forest Governance Learning Group (FGLG) in Vietnam. Many examples of good forest governance exist in the country — some introduced from outside, and some developed by local communities. Yet most of these examples remain hidden to people from other parts of the country due to lack of proper learning and sharing mechanisms. FGLG Vietnam shares experience and lessons on poverty alleviation through community forestry. FGLG Vietnam has organized a series of 16 field visits to 25 villages where local communities effectively manage forests. The 250 participants included policy makers at national level to provincial officials, district technicians, and local people.
FGLG findings indicate that when local people have the necessary rights and support in community forest management arrangements, they are more likely to take collective action to manage local forests, benefit from these resources, and adequately address the needs of the poor. In contrast, when communities have little ownership within decision-making processes due to inflexible policies, the implementation of these processes is likely to fail.
Property Reforms and Forest Rights in Vietnam, June 2010 – May 2011
This year-long project funded by the United Kingdom's Economic & Social Research Council (ESRC) engaged policymakers, forest experts, and the public on issues related to community forests in Vietnam. The project produced a series of policy and news briefs, a strategy paper, and other communications materials in Vietnamese and English. It aimed to highlight key issues related to forest management and advocate for national policy on forest rights and community forest management.
Promotion of Customary Practices in Biosphere Reserves and World Natural Heritage Sites in Vietnam, March 2010 – present
With funding and support from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), RECOFTC works as consultant to promote the use of customary practices in the management of eight biosphere reserves and two UNESCO Natural World Heritage Sites in Vietnam. Thus far, we have provided two trainings for staff members from these ten sites (55 participants) and assisted with the proposals and development of nine research projects. RECOFTC is involved in analyzing the policy framework that governs biosphere and heritage sites at global, national, and subnational levels.
Tool Kit for the Evaluation of Free, Prior, and Informed Consent (FPIC), May – June 2010
Within the framework of UN-REDD, RECOFTC took the lead in developing the tool kit for the evaluation and verification of the FPIC process in the UN-REDD Programme in Vietnam. The tool kit was tested in the Lam Ha and Di Linh districts of Lam Dong province. Findings from the evaluation and verification mission indicated that the country office adhered to the general FPIC guidance from the UN-REDD regional office, and but they also indicated areas where improvement was needed.
Contributions to a Study on REDD Benefit Distribution System, August – November 2009
Under the UN-REDD Vietnam Program, RECOFTC joined a team to study and recommend a design for an equitable and transparent benefit-distribution system for REDD+.
Community Forestry Management Pilot Evaluations, April 2008 – May 2009
In early 2008 and again in early 2009, the government asked RECOFTC to assess the state of community forestry in the country, seeking to help build capacity and share best practices at national, district, and local levels.
Our country office works in Vietnam under a Memorandum of Understanding with the Directorate of Forestry of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. We are currently conducting a Capacity Building Needs Assessment to analyze the country's ability to develop and implement community forestry programs. We are also undertaking a review of the community forest management situation at the local level. Our future program activities will focus on addressing the capacity gaps highlighted in the needs assessment and the community forest management review.
RECOFTC is a partner of the Forest Sector Support Partnership and an active participant in the Vietnamese Nongovernment Organizations and Climate Change (VNGO-CC) network and the Climate Change Working Group, advising members in both on REDD+ technical issues.
Regional Projects Active in Vietnam
Many of RECOFTC's regional initiatives have activities in Vietnam. These include: