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Earth Skills Network for protected areas

The Earth Skills Network is a unique partnership between the conservation and business worlds, which provides an opportunity for your organisation to:

  • work with business professionals to build business, management effectiveness and interpersonal skills
  • attend a fully funded ten-day training programme led by Business Mentors and Earthwatch learning professionals
  • benefit from ongoing business mentoring and support from an expert in an international organisation
  • build and enhance your networks with business professionals and other protected areas

In 2020, six African protected areas will each nominate three representatives who will benefit from the input of business planning guidance, personal skills development, and support for the duration of one year. We welcome applications from IUCN Natural Protected Areas, UNESCO World Heritage Sites (including sites on the tentative list), protected area agencies and management authorities.

"Every success story starts with a dream. Do you dream of a better future for your protected area? Joining this course was the best decision in my professional life. The content and experience were rich and, more importantly, the networking has been amazing."

Abdul-Kareem Fuseini, 2014 protected area representative, Ghana

What will you get out of it?

This programme is an opportunity for you to:

  • access a funded training programme in business planning and effective management practices
  • receive mentoring from an expert with significant business experience in an international organisation, helping your site to take a strategic approach to tackling specific issues
  • make better business sense of your organisation
  • develop your confidence, capabilities, competencies, and the skills that influence your ability to put what you have learnt into practice
  • build an action plan which identifies how you will implement business planning within your organisation
  • increase your leadership capabilities, including self-confidence, teamwork and influencing
  • have the opportunity for open, constructive dialogue with the business world, potentially with businesses that are operating in your country or region
  • make an important contribution to protected area management effectiveness assessments at your site.

"ESN was a total turnaround for me personally. The soft skills development helped me to build on my strengths and turn my weakness into strengths. This has impacted on my efficiency and helped to improve my relations with my staff to motivate them. The fundraising aspect of the ESN training is helping me to develop research and capacity development proposals. Since the ESN training in fundraising, I have been able to secure two small grants in these areas."

Samuel Kojo Annan-Riverson, 2016 protected area representative, Ghana


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