This work is intended to build international support for Indigenous-led efforts and increase both opportunity and capacity for Indigenous stewardship and identify additional areas in which Indigenous-led endeavors like this may be desired by Pacific communities. Our work will include, but is not limited to the goals set out below.
- Create an Indigenous network and advisory body to build a collective of Indigenous peoples who care about the well-being of the ocean and are advisors to Indigenous stewardship and knowledge about protecting our homelands. Some may understand this better using a western construct like “laws of the sea;” however, “law of the sea” is like trying to look through the eye of a needle at the world of Indigenous stewardship.
- Work within our communities to identify, train, and provide educational experiences through cross-collaboration and sharing in order to grow our ability to enact Indigenous stewardship in our homelands.
- Research approaches of other Indigenous groups and engage with them to confront and innovate around similar challenges and identify ways to implement best practices.
- Utilize already existing bodies and/or identify other necessary partners to support management change, including but not limited to: Indigenous led organizations, tribal partners, federal/crown/state partners, international bodies, etc..
- Identify necessary policy changes and pursue initial stages of drafting new policies.
- Research and develop a comprehensive study outlining the significant cultural and economic contributions Indigenous peoples bring to the world, which includes an emphasis on the ecosystem/environmental realm.
- Bring together individuals and entities working on Indigenous policy, observation, monitoring, and science in all Pacific nations.
- Explore potential for more support for Indigenous-led stewardship efforts and from NGOs. Organize support as needed to advance Indigenous stewardship action.
- Research and draft an Indigenous declaration of Native principles that guide the stewardship and protections of our homelands (see Appendix I).