“Funders have an opportunity to change the way we support these life defenders. It looks like providing flexible and more holistic support to not only defenders, but the struggles that could transform repression in the first place”
– Lindley Mease, CLIMA Fund Director
“Our funding practices should reflect the gendered nature of many of these threats and attacks, and acknowledge that women, LGBTQIA+, Indigenous, and Afro-descendant NRDs face greater and more personal forms of violence. This report highlights these groups and how funders can support those working at the intersections of gender, economic, and climate justice.”
– Kate Kroeger, Executive Director of the Urgent Action Fund for Women’s Human Rights and member of the CLIMA Fund
Resourcing Earth Defenders draws on the practical experience of grassroots activists and philanthropists to map the state of the increasing violence against Natural Resource Defenders in Latin America, and philanthropy’s response. With the escalation of resource extraction, authoritarian governments, and land grabbing globally, it is critical that funders respond by providing more flexible, holistic support to Earth Defenders.
Philanthropic support in Latin America trends towards short-term, project-based funding, or rapid response after a threat has occurred. This report suggests that philanthropy could focus on funding for movements, in order to more effectively support natural resource defenders experiencing increasing repression across Latin America. This would include a combination of rapid response, long-term support, and seed funding for movement organizations.
Resourcing Earth Defenders recommends shifting support from a crisis-centered approach to a movement-building one.