Saturday, August 08, 2015

Saamaka peoples upscale the use Participatory 3 Dimensional Modelling along the Upper Suriname River

In partnership with Tropenbos International Suriname (TBI), WWF, and the Association of Saamaka Authorities (VSG), CTA introduced the Participatory 3D Modelling (P3DM) process in Suriname in 2014. Due to the successful outcome of the 1st exercise, VSG – supported by TBI – applied for support from UNDP GEF Small Grants Programme (GEF-SGP) for extending the mapped area and upscale the community based planning exercise along the Upper Suriname River, towards the interior of the country.

Once GEF-SGP released the funds, a second P3DM exercise took place in June and July 2015. Areas that are important for the community’s way of life, particularly areas with high cultural and historical value were at the core of the process. Over an 11-day period, a total of ~65 representatives from 10 villages traveled to the village of Pikin Slee, to collectively determine a representative portion of Saamaka traditional land as a 3D physical map (built at a 1:15,000 scale).

The map was conceived with the specific objective of empowering local communities to play an active role in sound land-use and sustainable development. Saamaka participants populated the 3D model with locations of ecosystem services and cultural and historical landscape of value. With this, P3DM is demonstrating its utility in both socio-ecological production landscape based research, as well as in collaborative historical, cultural and ethno-archaeology studies in Suriname.

In this context, Tropenbos International Suriname is collaborating with the History Department of the Anton de Kom University of Suriname, Faculty of Humanity so that historical and contemporary cultural landscape use and services are better portrayed.

Notes: The project is granted to the Association of Saamaka Authorities (VSG), executed by Tropenbos International Suriname and financially supported by the UNDP GEF Small Grants Programme. CTA supported the participation of 2 delegates from CARIBSAVE in the exercise to ensure wider replication of the process in the Caribbean region.

More on 2014 P3DM activities in Suriname:

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