SEANAFE prepares for new challenges in 2010

SEANAFE braces itself for a challenging transition year in 2010 as it becomes an international nongovernmental organization (INGO) after the Sida grant period ends in December 2009. This was the pervading spirit emanated from the recently concluded 18th SEANAFE Board Meeting held on 7-9 September 2009 at Centre Point Langsuan Hotel in Bangkok, Thailand.

To prepare for the new INGO status of SEANAFE in 2010 sans support from Sida and ICRAF, the SEANAFE Board approved the following exit strategies:

a. Institutionalization of membership expansion & collection of annual membership fees
b. Commitment signing of heads of member institutions in support of country network operations
c. Regular mapping of SEANAFE’s institutional linkages for resource mobilization
d. Expansion of the Network’s Subject Matter Coverage and Strengthening of Inter-Country Network Collaborations
e. Offering of SEANAFE training courses on fee-basis
f. Development of a full proposal for Phase 3 operation for submission to funding donors
g. Designation of a member institution to take up the role of SEANAFE’s Secretariat from ICRAF
h. Establishment of a “virtual” Board to sustain policy and decision making processes

The above strategies prompted the SEANAFE Board to produce the following major decisions:

a. Designation of the Philippine Agroforestry Education and Research Network (PAFERN), particularly the Institute of Agroforestry of the University of the Philippines Los Banos, as temporary Secretariat of SEANAFE until at least 6 months to a maximum of 1 year starting January 2010.
b. Listing of necessary amendments to the SEANAFE Charter to conform to the network’s new status as INGO
c. Firming up of basic requirements and formulation of guidelines, including an organizational structure, for SEANAFE to operate as an INGO
d. Development of implementing guidelines to operationalize the exit strategies
e. Identification of areas of concern for inter-country network collaboration to generate funding
f. Submission of proposal to Sida before end of November 2009 requesting use of project budget balance to operate as an INGO in 2010

Progress on Items (b) to (e) by designated members of the SEANAFE Board shall be presented and finalized during a special meeting among country network coordinators on 8 October 2009 after the conduct of SEANAFE’s Regional Training Course on Sustainable Agroforestry Development in the Uplands of Southeast Asia on 23 September-8 October 2009 in the Philippines.