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November 2013

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In 1991, the Center for Women’s Global Leadership established the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence, Nov. 25 to Dec. 10, to raise awareness and promote action to eliminate all forms of violence against women. These dates symbolically link International Day Against Violence Against Women (Nov. 25) and International Human Rights Day (Dec. 10). Winrock encourages all its programs to promote gender equality and raise awareness against gender-based violence in their activities. Visit Winrock online for more information on our commitment to Gender Equality & Human Rights.

Winrock will host a Grazing Workshop and Field Day, Dec. 10, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Southwest Research and Extension Center in Hope, Ark., to provide hands-on training and demonstrations to farmers and ranchers in southwest Arkansas, and make them aware of one-on-one technical assistance available. For more information on the workshop, contact Sydney Pack at (501) 280-3021 or via email.

Funded by a USDA Conservation Innovation Grant, approved by the American Carbon Registry and co-authored by project partners Ducks Unlimited, The Climate Trust, The Nature Conservancy, Environmental Defense Fund and Terra Global Capital, the Avoided Conversion of Grasslands and Shrublands carbon offset methodology is the first of its kind and provides opportunities for achieving a meaningful level of emissions reductions in the agriculture sector. In practice, the methodology will enable agricultural producers to earn income from the sale of carbon credits generated through the preservation of their grasslands. Read more.

Food banks have tremendous infrastructure, and a commitment to feeding people nutritious food. Several food banks across the country are leveraging their resources to support local/regional food systems in innovative ways. Join the Wallace Center’s National Good Food Network for presentations from FoodLinkNY and the Sacramento Food Bank on Dec. 12, during a free webinar. Sign up today.

From Oct. 28 to Nov. 1, the Winrock-implemented Lowering Emissions in Asia’s Forests (LEAF) project held a technical training on forest carbon stratification and estimating historical emissions in Da Lat, Vietnam. The hands-on training allowed 27 Vietnamese geospatial analysts and foresters to develop a preliminary reference level for Lam Dong Province to be approved by the Provincial People’s Committee in early 2014. Read more on this and other LEAF news. 

Are you interested in working at Winrock? Search current openings and post your resume. Would you like to volunteer with Winrock? Learn more about new opportunities for volunteers.

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Room to Learn Approved for Microsoft's #YouthSpark Initiative for #GivingTuesday
GivingTuesday save the date boxWinrock is excited that the Room to Learn - Education for Youth in South Sudan project has been approved for Microsoft’s #YouthSpark initiative, meaning it is eligible for #YouthSpark’s #GivingTuesday campaign this year. Microsoft will provide a 100-percent match for every donation up to $1,000 until matching funds run out — with $250,000 up for grabs. The campaign will begin at noon EST on Dec. 3.

The first Tuesday after Thanksgiving — Dec. 3 in 2013 — has been dubbed #GivingTuesday and is part of an effort to kick off the annual holiday season with a national day of giving in support of nonprofit organizations. Winrock is proud to be a part of this special day and we invite you to participate by signing up to be a Winrock volunteer and searching current volunteer opportunities in order to share your expertise. You can also make a contribution to one of the Winrock-implemented projects on GlobalGiving. As always, thank you for your support of Winrock’s mission.

Has the Idea of ‘Zero Deforestation’ Lost Its Meaning?
Deforestation in the Tesso Nilo National Park, Indonesia, May 2013What exactly does “zero deforestation” mean? In an article published in the journal Science, authors Dr. Sandra Brown, of Winrock International, and Dr. Daniel Zarin, of the Climate and Land Use Alliance, posit that, while the idea seems simple and compelling, ambiguity surrounding global definitions and metrics actually creates risks for forest conservation and accountability.

Over the past several years, governments, corporations, and non-governmental organizations have paid significant attention to efforts to reduce tropical deforestation, setting goals and targets for the achievement of zero deforestation. These targets, and the global discussions which precede them, are well-meaning and imperative. In fact, when it comes to mitigating the effects of climate change, the role played by reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) has received considerable attention. However, as Brown and Zarin point out, some of these global targets specify “net deforestation,” some “gross deforestation,” some do not specify at all, and others may actually use these terms interchangeably. This confusion over terms that each have their own meanings could lead to some perverse outcomes, they write.

“Until targets are clarified, and metrics agreed upon, zero may mean nothing at all,” say authors Sandra Brown, chief scientist with Winrock’s Ecosystem Services, and Dan Zarin, program director of the Climate and Land Use Alliance. Read more.

Project Helps Young Tibetans Learn Skills to Preserve Culture, Earn Much-Needed Income
Trainees mix paint to get the right hue before applying to wallTraditional imagery, auspicious symbols and meaningful motifs are important to many Tibetans. These representations, usually depicted in oil paintings, adorn objects big and small — from furniture to accessories; in public places and in homes. There is a lack of skilled artisans, however, in the Tibetan areas of China to meet the large demand for oil painters.

To address this need for accomplished painters, to satisfy the desire of Tibetans who want see their culture reflected in their surroundings, and perhaps most importantly, to help young people acquire the skills necessary to sustain much-needed income, the Winrock-implemented Tibetan Sustainable Environment Resources for Increased Economic Growth (TSERING) project supported vocational training in oil painting for 25 participants. The intensive training exposed the trainees to the history, theory and practice of oil painting. Trainees had ample opportunities to “get their hands dirty” in actual projects that allowed them to hone their craft.

After completing the vocational program — which was held in Nianduhu Township, Qinghai Province, in southwest China — 20 trainees landed jobs with small businesses that provide painting services to the Tibetan community. The subsequent income from the jobs contributed to the improvement of their households, and some trainees are already making plans to start their own businesses.

Nyima, a young man from nearby Quma Village who completed the vocational program, said, “The training helped me get good skills. I like my job, and other people appreciate my work.”

The goal of the USAID-funded TSERING project is to improve livelihoods, preserve culture and enhance environmental management in Tibetan communities in the western and southwestern regions of China.

USDA Deputy Secretary Hosts Roundtable Discussions at Winrock for Arkansas Farmers
USDA Deputy Secretary Harden hosts a roundtable discussionsThe United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Secretary, Krysta Harden, hosted two roundtable discussions at Winrock International on Nov. 19. The first discussion was focused on new farmers, including young Future Farmers of America (FFA), as well as 4-H members and advisors. The second discussion centered on diversity in agriculture, and included minority and limited-resource farmers from across Arkansas. Approximately 50 Arkansans involved in agriculture attended the two events.

Winrock, in partnership with the USDA Office of Advocacy and Outreach, and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, has been working with socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers in West Arkansas and East Oklahoma. Through the Tools to Increase Money and Efficiency (TIME) program, farmers and ranchers receive access to one-on-one technical assistance. Through this assistance, farmers and ranchers are introduced to efficient conservation practices and to available and relevant USDA programs, in order to provide culturally and linguistically appropriate outreach to farmers and ranchers.


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