Cudia, Jane Victoria A.February 23, 2011 2007-15891Soc Sci 180 Role of Women in Forest Management
Increasingly, the role of indigenous peoples in forest management and conservation had been recognized on the international level. Even if forest management and conservation had been an indigenous practice since time immemorial, recognition of indigenous peoples roles started only three or four decades ago. However, indigenous peoples as protectors of the environment are taken as a whole disregarding the contribution of roles and differences as contributing factors to the continuous practice of forest management and conservation.
In terms of IP roles in forest management and conservation, gender is a very important thing to consider. Given an indigenous social and political context, the management of forests is communal. In general, forest management is primarily the domain of men. Women’s participation on the other hand primarily lies in forest protection because there is an intimate relationship between IP women and the forest (Caguioa, 2011). However, problem lies in the lack of recognition in national policies as to the roles of IP women in forest management and conservation.
The pine forest of Brgy. Agawa, Besao, Mt. Province is a communal forest shared by different communities managed mostly by indigenous peoples. For the people of Brgy. Agawa, the forest or langdas is the source of livelihood and a place where their unique culture thrive, one of the major features of indigenous peoples. In terms of livelihood, the langdas is the source of wild fruits and animals, lumber, and firewood. In the indigenous law they practice, selling of pine lumber is prohibited. Also, outsiders are prohibited from getting anything from the langdas making the practice sustainable. In terms of tradition and culture, they believe that there are spirits guarding the rivers and forests. This is one of the reasons...