Silverius Oscar Unggul
Fellow Since 2006
JAUH (Jaringan untuk Hutan)
This profile was prepared when Silverius Oscar Unggul was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2006.
The New Idea
Silverius Oscar Unggul, together with his organization JAUH from Southeast Sulawesi, is helping villagers manage their own timber enterprise and become key players in the highly competitive market for “green” or certified environmentally friendly timber. Through a collective working mechanism, communities are now able to manage an eco-friendly teak plantations and earn up to four times more income. This model has given the local communities an economic incentive and a stronger sense of ownership over valuable forest resources. Through their success in the “green” timber industry, Silverius is proving that local community cooperatives can and should play a major role in sustainable forest management. In the timber processing industry, only 10 percent of the companies are able to work towards obtaining eco-label certification for their timber. Silverius has proven that community cooperatives are capable of complying with the stringent requirements necessary to obtain the much coveted certification from the international Forest Stewardship Council’s SmartWood program. A pilot program has been implemented by the cooperative in South Konawe District with over 300 members from 12 villages.Silverius, his team, and the community have also been able to lobby the Indonesian Forestry Ministry to implement a social forestry program. Under this Forestry Ministry decree, the people living in and around the forest will be granted concessions to manage the state’s regulated forest areas. The plan will cover 38,959 hectares of productive forest and will involve 8,534 households or 17 percent of the total population in the South Konawe District. This is a significant decree because up until then, local communities had very little access to state forests. Considering the growing demand for “green” timber worldwide, Silverius is working with his allies to spread his community-based model throughout the country.