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GCF direct access week puts countries’ climate actions in the fast lane

The Green Climate Fund concluded its first “Readiness Week” to assist direct access entities in developing their project ideas. The week-long event brought together the 13 organizations that have been accredited for direct access to the Fund, as well as 27 developing countries, represented by a National Designated Authority or Focal Point (NDA/FP). Nearly 100 people took part in the sessions, including representatives from Least Developed Countries, Small Island Developing States, and African States.

During the week’s first three days, interactive working sessions saw GCF’s partners present their project ideas and priorities to solicit feedback and inputs from their peers and from technical leads at the Fund. Concepts covered agriculture, renewable energy, natural resources management, transportation, communities and ecosystems resilience, sustainable cities and urbanization, and climate-smart supply chains.

On days four and five, focus shifted to full-day sessions on gender and south-south exchange. In conjunction with UN Women, the Fund delivered a training on mainstreaming women’s empowerment in the context of climate action, looking at the gender-specific considerations that must be factored in project design and implementation.

The south-south thematic day saw country partners and Korean institutions share project experiences across four themes—climate compatible cities, climate-resilient agriculture, forests, and energy generation and access. The day was organized in partnership with the Korean Ministry of Strategy and Finance.

Sharing experiences and knowledge

A common thread of the week was a hands-on approach, fostering collaboration and partnerships among NDAs and Accredited Entities (AEs). Participants commented on the value of being able to “workshop” their projects in groups as a way to build upon and strengthen their own capacity, while leveraging their peers’ expertise.

“Dialogue and communication are important to build effective country partnerships,” said Anna Elizabeth Tiraa, NDA representative for the Cook Islands. “As an NDA, our role is to connect the dots, to share what we hear and learn; and this meeting has helped us in this task.”

GCF’s Executive Director Héla Cheikhrouhou brought the week to a close by commending the Fund’s country partners for their commitment to move forward their most promising projects and programmes. She reminded participants of their responsibility to help GCF deliver on its paradigm-shifting mandate.

“GCF’s role is to provide you with the necessary support so that you can lead transformative changes in your countries and regions,” said Ms. Cheikhrouhou. “You are a trusted GCF partner, and the Fund can only be successful if you deliver on bringing about significant projects or programmes.”

As an operating entity of the Financial Mechanism of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, GCF is mandated to promote a paradigm shift towards low-emission and climate-resilient development pathways in developing countries.

Credit: Green Climate Fund

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