The GEF Small Grants Programme in the Philippines (GEF SGP) started in 1992 as one of thirty-three pilot countries. The Association of Foundations coordinated and managed the pilot phase (1992-1995) as host nongovernmental organization (NGO). At the start of Operational Phase 1 in 1996, the Programme was moved from its host NGO to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
The National Steering Committee is the GEF SGP’s policymaking body, responsible for determining strategy, screening projects, providing technical support, and overseeing program management.
From 1992 to 2014 (Phase 1-4, the program has funded 293 projects amounting to US$ 9,451,453, which included projects on biodiversity, multi-focal areas, climate change and Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). Its list of grantees is comprised of over 200 people’s organizations (POs), NGOs, and community-based organizations (CBOs) from all over the country whose aims and goals are aligned with the GEF’s main focal themes.
SGP Philippines has contributed to the achievement of the following:
- Local level management and policy interventions;
- Slow down of forest degradation and decreased hunting pressure by addressing the incidence of hunting/fishing and gathering of threatened species, slow down of habitat destruction, establishment of ‘no take’ zones, approval of local policies to establish protection or maintenance of several single species populations, facilitation of multistakeholder protection;
- The support of traditional cultures of indigenous peoples (IPs) to protect ancestral lands with diverse endemic flora and fauna in its biodiversity-rich areas;
- Provision of assistance in securing Certificate of Ancestral Domain Title (CADT) for IPs;
- The establishment or expansion of marine protected areas (MPAs) for food and security;
- Provision of support for a range of renewable energy options such as micro-hydro-power and solar power and the piloting of small-scale offset of Greenhouse Gas emissions of rice mills and other engines; and
- Creation of baseline studies for reference in planning and evaluation of other projects and programs.
The Global Environment Facility (GEF) approved the Fifth Operational Phase of the Small Grants Programme in the Philippines (SGP-5) amounting to US$ 4.5 million in June 2012, and is focused on biodiversity conservation. SGP-5 is executed by UNDP, with the Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB) of the DENR as implementing partner.
SGP-5 Philippines aims to secure global environmental benefits through community-based biodiversity conservation initiatives and actions in selected priority sites.