Diverse Perspectives – Common Ground

Across the Prairie Parklands, the sustainability of prairie landscapes is influenced by the many people who manage, use, and conserve the land. In many cases, their livelihood depends on the use and management of the land – a true working landscape. Also, the prairie landscape carries cultural value and significance for many Indigenous Peoples. The rights of Indigenous People depend on a sustainable landscape. Conservation is challenging in this landscape, where change in land use is highly responsive to socio-economic imperatives.

Integrating Human Dimensions (HD) in conservation requires a recognition that conservation is linked to culture, community, trust, credibility and the ability to bridge diverse perspectives in a way that scales up to create an impact over time and space.

Conservation organizations have recognized the important role conservation can play on the path toward reconciliation in Canada. This includes recognizing the history of Western systems that exist within conservation and environmental management and taking action towards reconciliation and supporting Indigenous-led conservation and stewardship initiatives.

In the Western Boreal Forest (WBF) regions of the PHJV, Ducks Unlimited Canada works closely with Indigenous partners, communities, governments and businesses to advance Indigenous-led conservation initiatives on traditional lands upon which so many people depend.  Water and land have been integral to the identity of Indigenous Peoples since time immemorial, representing the very essence of their existence. For countless generations, the WBF has provided not just sustenance but also a profound spiritual connection for its people. Respecting and valuing Indigenous Peoples’ inherent and treaty rights, as well as their Traditional Knowledge for land and water stewardship is an important aspect of this work.