ADAP’s story

Insufficient integration of local development and nature conservation into traditional cooperation approaches lay at the roots of ADAP’s creation in Geneva in 1997. Today we continue our efforts for the return of marginalized, local actors to their legitimate place at the center of local governance.

ADAP has always worked in areas with strong limitations and that are characterized as: landlocked, marginalized by development policies, the last refuges for biodiversity and having populations that often depend on the direct use of natural resources.

Our projects have thus focused on the peripheries of protected areas (national parks, government reserves), and have often led to support for establishing community-protected areas.

ADAP’s first project experiment conducted in the Central African Republic from 1997 to 2001 was aimed at supporting areas dedicated to game hunting and managed by the villages in the buffer zones of the Bamingui-Bangoran National Park in the north of the country. Despite promising beginnings marked by a strong interest from local communities in setting up community management, the project had to be abandoned after unrest and insecurity prevented its smooth execution.

Drawing lessons from this first experience and following its integration into the Fédération genevoise de Coopération (FGC), ADAP developed its activities in Tanzania  (2001-today), Mozambique (2003-2005), and Burkina Faso (2004-2015).

ADAP’s first project from 1997 to 2001 in the Central African Republic supported the creation of game hunting zones to be managed by the villages on the outskirts of Bamingui-Bangoran National Park in the north of the country. Despite strong, local interest in community management the project had to be abandoned because of growing unrest and insecurity in the country.

ADAP’s work in Mozambique was hampered by a complicated national post-conflict situation, but the projects in Tanzania and Burkina Faso quickly achieved good results for local development and nature conservation. They were designed and implemented over the long term, necessary for the gradual establishment of community management of land and resources.

ADAP has developed new projects in Tanzania’s Selous-Niassa corridor (2006-2011), and  in Madagascar (2016-2019). It operates thanks to an important voluntary investment in Switzerland and works with partners in the field to strengthen their capacities towards increasing autonomy.

Since its beginnings, ADAP has initiated  public awareness campaigns in Geneva, targeted at its members and the general public. These campaigns focused on environmental issues and the complex relationship between conservation and development. ADAP continues to participate in Geneva events and organizes conference days, exhibitions, and support evenings.

Find us on