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Dear friends,

This World Environment Day on Saturday, 5 June, will kick off the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, a worldwide effort to rebuild healthy ecosystems that can stop the collapse of biodiversity, counteract climate change and enhance people’s livelihoods. 

IUCN must help lead this massive global undertaking including ensuring that women, young people, and indigenous communities, have a meaningful, active and equitable role in IUCN governance.

In a recent op-ed for the World Economic Forum, I highlighted an agenda for empowering every woman and man to play a part in preserving our planet — both at the policy level and at the grassroots level. 

While the enormity of the challenge can seem daunting, we can all find inspiration in many of the fearless women who have received grants to combat species extinction from the organization I lead, the Mohamed Bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund (MBZ Fund). Women like Purnima Devi Barman, who founded the Hargila Army, a local all-female volunteer group protecting India’s greater adjutant stork, and Rachel Ikemeh, who is leading efforts to conserve the Niger Delta Red Colobus Monkey. You can read more about the work of these and other women supported by the MBZ Fund in a series of interviews published in World Atlas

As we prepare for IUCN World Conservation Congress in September, I hope you will consider supporting my campaign for IUCN president and my vision for a vital, dynamic, and inclusive Union that leads the world in restoring the planet’s ecosystems. 


Razan Al Mubarak
Candidate for IUCN President
Managing Director of Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund

The Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund