Ismaili CIVIC and WWF-Pakistan Join Forces to Combat Climate Change
Ismaili CIVIC Pakistan, under the auspices of the Ismaili Council for Pakistan, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the World Wide Fund for Nature – Pakistan (WWF-Pakistan) in an effort to align their resources and efforts towards common objectives, including addressing climate change, conserving biodiversity, and enhancing community resilience. This strategic partnership underscores their commitment to driving positive change through afforestation, education, and awareness campaigns.
The signing ceremony for the MoU took place in Karachi and was attended by prominent dignitaries, including Nizar Mewawalla, President of the Ismaili Council for Pakistan; Arif Sajwani, Executive Officer of the Ismaili Council for Pakistan; Nadeem Khalid, President of WWF-Pakistan; Hammad Naqi Khan, CEO/Director General of WWF-Pakistan; as well as Vice Presidents, board members, and senior representatives from both WWF-Pakistan and the Ismaili Council for Pakistan. The leadership of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) was also present at the event.
Under this collaborative initiative, WWF-Pakistan will offer its technical expertise to Ismaili CIVIC Pakistan to develop afforestation and forest protection plans in various locations across the country. Concurrently, Ismaili CIVIC Pakistan, assisted by community volunteers, will engage in eco-friendly activities in partnership with WWF-Pakistan to further their environmental protection efforts through various programs and activities. This partnership underscores the significance of collective action in addressing pressing environmental issues and driving positive change in Pakistan’s ecological landscape.
Hammad Naqi Khan, Director General of WWF-Pakistan, highlighted WWF’s role in mitigating climate change, stating, “WWF’s impact can be seen throughout Pakistan, from the northern Himalayan mountains to the plains of Punjab and the southern Delta. We collaborate with partners to transform challenges into solutions. This includes activities like carbon sequestration and afforestation at various levels, as well as the implementation of nature-based solutions with communities to enhance resilience to climate-induced risks. However, collaboration is key, and today’s agreement is significant as it strengthens our efforts to influence the course of conservation. In partnership with Ismaili CIVIC Pakistan, we aim to leverage the strength of their network and their dedicated volunteer base to co-create and implement solutions for pollution, unsustainable tourism, and poorly planned development.”
In addition to afforestation initiatives, the partnership also focuses on jointly exploring, piloting, and scaling up livelihood opportunities for the youth of Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral. Both organizations will collaborate to address environmental challenges, including pollution, unsustainable tourism practices, and development projects, with a sense of urgency.
During the event, Nizar Mewawalla, President of the Ismaili Council for Pakistan, praised WWF’s dedication to conserving nature and natural resources by enhancing the health and condition of Pakistan’s natural environment. He emphasized, “Environmental care is arguably the most pressing need of our time and is a key area of focus for the Ismaili Imamat and AKDN.”
Since its inception, Ismaili CIVIC Pakistan has planted over 3 million trees across the country. Moreover, more than 120,000 volunteers have contributed over 200,000 hours of voluntary service and collected approximately 80,000 kg of waste materials, including paper, plastics, and other debris, from over 250 public places and community centers nationwide.