The Samdhana Institute's vision is for a region where natural, cultural and spiritual diversity are valued and environmental conflicts are resolved peacefully, with justice and equity for all parties. Achieving this requires that communities who directly manage their local natural resources have clear rights, ready recourse to justice, strong and skilled leadership, stable financial resources and access to appropriate technical support.
There is growing consensus that conservation and natural resource conflict management efforts are failing but there is a reluctance to fully reflect upon these failures. While commitment and hard work are not lacking among local and international NGOs, often a clear understanding of where they have been, where they are, and where they are going is. Related to this is a systemic problem that many organizations and individuals are so active in responding to the immediate needs of the communities and ecosystems on whose behalf they are working, they rarely take the time to reflect and regroup. When assessment and planning is done, methods used by many organizations often fail to maximize the potential, learning and creativity of their staff.
With a growing network of fellows, Samdhana assists in environmental conflict and mediation support and helps local organizations to reflect upon on their approaches to: i) problem identification and strategic planning ii) leading change processes iii) monitoring and assessment and iv) reflection upon effectiveness. The Samdhana approach is to have Fellows work closely with partners over time and during critical periods in program development.