The United Nations GEF Small Grants Programme (SGP) brought together public agencies, private sector and volunteers on solutions and practices developed by civil society organisations. Coordinated by Gökmen Argun, National Coordinator for the United Nations GEF Small Grants Programme (SGP), the fair hosted 40 of the 310 projects undertaken by civil society organisations and partners supported by SGP, on the theme of “Self-sufficient is city-sufficient” with Ertan Karabıyık of Kalkınma Atölyesi (Development Workshop) as consultant and Selin Ayaeş as project coordinator.

The GEF Small Grants Programme (SGP) held its 2019 projects meetup in partnership with Kalkınma Atölyesi (Development Workshop) on 5-6 October at CerModern. The fair featured 40 of the 310 projects undertaken by civil society organisations and partners supported by SGP. Featured, in addition to civil society organisations displaying their projects at the fair, were the stories and activities of individual and collective ventures that created solidarity-focused, ecological and egalitarian alternatives in urban and rural areas to increase similar projects and make all sustainable.

“Self-sufficient is city-sufficient” fair was organised to promote locally developed solutions, boost similar work and make all sustainable for addressing such universal concerns as preservation and sustainability of biodiversity, climate change and soil degradation where the GEF Small Grants Programme (SGP) had direct or indirect influence on efforts.

The programme featured a series of talks themed “Speaking to Own City” on the second day. In his opening remarks, UNDP Turkey Resident Representative Claudio Tomasi noted that the SGP programme operating in Turkey for 26 years was critically important in supporting local solutions towards the Global Goals.

Further opening remarks were made by Fuat Uzun, Assistant Secretary-General of Ankara Metropolitan Municipality, and Akif Özkaldı, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Forestry and GEF Administrative Focal Point.

Drawing much attention from high schools and universities in Ankara, “Self-sufficient is city-sufficient” fair marked a part of such collective story that endeavoured to recreate the sense of urbanity along an ecological perspective. Fourteen speakers who, by their stories, inspired various initiatives and projects shared own experience with an audience of largely young people. The idea was to enable the youth to find better solutions relying on the wealth of their own world, concepts and instruments specific to their time.

“Self-sufficient is city-sufficient” fair aims to produce a project output for the common perception and roadmap which it has been advocating all along. It presents a systematic framework starting up from the planning for the fair and including how key actors will be engaged in the process. Video outputs of speakers and the fair as well as the workframe will be posted on GEF website and social media accounts.

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