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Blog » Grievance Redress mechanism helps improve management of Peru's natural protected areas
As part of the safeguards requirements of the GEF 6 ASL national project “Securing the Future of Peru's Natural Protected Areas”, implemented by WWF and executed by SERNANP and PROFONANPE, a Grievance Redress Mechanism (Mecanismo de Atención de Quejas y Sugerencias, MAQS) was developed.
The project team understood that MAQS could play a significant role in the project context, both as a tool that could support protected areas (PA) participatory processes and as a mechanism that could allow citizens to submit, both in person and virtually, their grievances as well as their comments and suggestions about the project operation, allowing PAs’ management units to respond and adjust operations and engagement procedures as needed.
Towards that objective and in collaboration with SERNANP, the project team decided to invest particular efforts in promoting the use of the tool amongst project stakeholders, from national actors to indigenous communities, in the project’s PAs. This entailed the preparation of communication materials, which were made available in the various local languages and designed following a culturally appropriate aesthetic, as well as their active promotion in all project meetings and events.
César Aliaga - Chief of the Machiguenga Communal Reserve (MCR) - SERNANP and Katerin Iquiapaza, park ranger or the MCR - SERNANP (Photo credit: Daniel Sumalavia - ASL)
The MAQS has been received positively by project stakeholders, including representatives from indigenous and local communities, who have started to use the tool not only to communicate complains, but also to share queries and suggestions for improvement. Having an active MAQS with clear procedures, responsibilities, and timing has worked to nurture and thus improve trust between communities and SERNANP. Furthermore, stakeholders recognized the importance of having a focal point in the Project Management Unit (PMU) that was able to guide and support them as they initiated a query, complaint or suggestion.
Although the tool was originally designed for the project’s intervention areas, it has now been adopted at an institutional level and scaled up to the whole PA national system in Peru given its positive results and progressive adoption by SERNANP’s staff. Certainly, this is a crucial achievement for the project and this tool’s design and implementation can be a key lesson to similar initiatives in the Amazon region.
Watch the video here (in Spanish).