The first World Wilderness Congress convened in 1977 in South Africa as a result of the wise-words of Magqubu Ntombela to Dr. Ian Player: “We are doing good work, but we need to do more. We should call an INDABA-KULU – a great gathering – for all the people to come together for wilderness.”
Nearly 40 years later, WILD facilitates conversations, stewards ideas and mentors projects through the collaboration of individuals and groups worldwide for focused conservation goals and projects. A brief representation of our collaborative work includes:
The World Wilderness Congress (WWC) is an ongoing conservation project, focused on practical outcomes in policy, new wilderness areas, new funding mechanisms, trainings for communities and professionals, and more.
The WWC is not your typical “conference” – it integrates art, science, management, government, academia, native leaders, youth, corporate leaders and advocates into a multi-year conservation program, with unique results at each convening. It is the best-known and most effective global platform for debating and acting on wilderness issues. We provide a balanced approach, taking on highly charged issues in a constructive manner, and most importantly helping to facilitate solutions.
WWCs are also critical venues for education, training, networking, and information exchange across diverse groups. Our goal is to build this global wilderness community through online communications in-between the physical gathering at each WWC.
In addition to the impact of our core programs, WILD seizes opportunities to extend its reach with its Partner Projects. WILD establishes Collaborative Conservation Agreements (CCA) with other groups and projects that further our mission and vision. These projects are primarily developed and implemented by partners, but guided and often launched by WILD. WILD offers strategic guidance, catalytic funding support, communications advice and global connections to its Partner Projects to empower project leaders who typically develop self-sustaining models with WILD’s help.
In its Partner Projects, WILD leverages its resources with others to increase collective impact. Our history of collaborative conservation partnerships reflects our “entrepreneurial” approach to incubate and catalyze innovative projects. This is one more way that WILD catalyzes the growth of a wide and diverse conservation movement.
The North American Inter-Governmental Committee on Cooperation for Wilderness & Protected Areas Conservation (NAWPA Committee) is comprised of the heads of federal land management agencies that oversee wilderness and protected areas in Canada, the United State sand Mexico. These agencies share a continent with vast, interconnected wilderness and other land, marine and coastal areas protected in a natural state. Forests, mountain ranges, wildlife species, freshwater systems, and oceans and marine life extending across boundaries are treasured by each for their intrinsic and practical values. The NAWPA Committee aims to strengthen the conservation and management of these areas by cooperating on the formulation and implementation of strategies related to the research, monitoring, protection, and restoration of natural resources, ecosystems and their components, while facilitating opportunities for public outreach, education, visitor experience and enjoyment.
The mandate of the NAWPA Committee is prescribed by the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Cooperation for Wilderness Conservation signed by seven North American government agencies at WILD9, the 9th World Wilderness Congress (WWC), in Mérida, State of Yucatán, Mexico on 7 November 2009.