Mission & vision
NCIV believes in a world where indigenous peoples can live in peace without poverty on their ancestral territories, maintaining their own cultural identity.
An estimated 370 million indigenous people live in some 90 different countries on every continent. They represent more than 4,000 of the nearly 7,000 languages, which are still spoken in the world today. Although indigenous peoples constitute less than 6 percent of the world’s population, they are 15 per cent of the world's poor. Due to several developments, such as the increasing exploitation of natural resources, modernization and climate change, the natural habitat, the unique lifestyle and even the survival of indigenous peoples are seriously threatened. A large part of our cultural diversity, but also an enormous amount of traditional knowledge about medicinal plants and sustainable living with nature, is on the brink of disappearing.
Indigenous peoples have the right to their own way of life on their ancestral territory, to which their cultural and spiritual identity is strongly linked. In 2007, these and other fundamental human rights were recognized in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Although indigenous peoples are increasingly successful in claiming these rights, still gross violations of their human rights take place, such as discrimination, exploitation, land grab, repression and violence. This is why indigenous peoples currently are among the world's poorest people.
The NCIV believes that things must and can change. We believe that a world where the rights of indigenous peoples are respected is possible. That indigenous peoples can live in peace and without poverty on their ancestral territories, maintaining their own cultural identity. That the alternative world views of indigenous peoples are not seen as a limitation to development, but that they are rather welcomed into the dialogue on sustainable life on earth.
NCIV advocates the rights and interests of indigenous peoples
Since 1969 NCIV is dedicated to the recognition and implementation of the rights of indigenous peoples. The adoption of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in 2007 has been an important landmark for NCIV. Herewith, an important part of NCIV’s mission was realized. However, much remains to be done to assure that these rights are actually realized and respected. Therefore, being a Dutch-based organization, NCIV is now focused on the implementation of the Declaration by The Netherlands. NCIV brings the issues and views of indigenous peoples to the attention of the Dutch government, civil society, business and science and works to encourage them to make a positive contribution to improving the situation of indigenous peoples at national and international levels.
NCIV is convinced that the Dutch government, civil society organizations, scientific institutions and businesses can make a significant contribution to improving the situation of indigenous peoples. The Dutch government has impact on indigenous peoples through international cooperation, foreign policy and its policies on sustainable trade that might affect them. Many sectors of the Dutch business, such as timber, palm oil and soy industry is linked to the well being of indigenous peoples. And Dutch civil society plays an important role in international cooperation, sustainable trade, conservation and promotion of human rights.