[PAST EVENT] Dr. Nomvuselelo Songelwa, "Reimagined Protected Area Conservation: A South African Experience "

September 29, 2022
4pm - 5:30pm
Reves Center for International Studies, Reves Room
200 S Boundary St
Williamsburg, VA 23185Map this location
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Dr. Nomvuselelo ‘Mvusy’ Songelwa,

In South Africa, Protected Areas are critical to socio-economic transformation and to poverty alleviation. Access and sharing of benefits with communities adjacent to Protected Areas is critical to the sustainability of these system. Most protected areas (land and marine) were established during the apartheid era, with the legal exclusion of most people in the country.

The requirement to manage Protected Areas for socioeconomic transformation and poverty alleviation is mandated in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, which stipulates the rights of citizens to a healthy environment and conservation of natural and cultural resources for the benefit of future generations. The Constitution specifically compels the state to ensure security of ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources while promoting justifiable economic and social development.

Having worked directly with communities to implement the beneficiation strategy, Dr. Songwela will present a variety of creative instruments for socioeconomic transformation that South Africa is implementing to ensure a transformed Protected Area Management Conservation, in particular under the National Environmental Management: Protected Areas Act of 2003; with the mandate to conserve, protect, control, and manage national parks and other defined protected areas and their biological diversity.

About Dr. Nomvuselelo ‘Mvusy’ Songelwa:

Dr. Songelwa has been with South African National Parks since 1996 and was in the coalface of the transformation of conservation approach and practices. She brings years of experience of Management of Protected Areas at local, regional, and executive level, policy development and implementation and stakeholder engagement that spans from local communities to ministerial level. As a black woman, executive, and a woman in conservation, Dr. Songelwa’s new career of life coaching focusses on empowering, nurturing and guiding (mostly) women executives. She currently mentors women in conservation and tourism in South Africa.

This event is sponsored by the Institute for Integrative Conservation, in collaboration with the W&M Health and Equity Lab of the Department of Kinesiology, and the W&M Reves Center for International Studies.