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Community engagement

Recognising that many community members are aware of and actively aim to manage natural resources, communities can perceive conservation-related projects as a strategy to restrict their access to the natural resources on which they depend.

As a result, it becomes difficult in most cases for communities to accept a project as community-owned without tangible benefits. Involvement of the community in project planning and implementation phases, the introduction of genuine livelihood opportunities and the wider provision of basic socio-economic needs (good roads, health facilities, schools, safe drinking water,) would help to increase a sense of community ownership of the project and commitment to mutual goals of sustainable access to and use of natural resources and ecosystem services.