Following the inscription of Maloti Drakensberg Park World Heritage Site (MDPWHS) in 2013, the process of development of the COMPACT Site Strategy started and was finalized in 2019. The purpose of COMPACT is to engage in innovative models for engaging communities in conservation and shared governance of World Heritage sites and other protected areas and is based on the proposition that ‘community-based initiatives can significantly increase the effectiveness of biodiversity conservation in World Heritage sites while helping to improve the livelihoods of local people’ using small grants to support clusters of community-based activities that are intended to strengthen biodiversity conservation in and around protected areas. The development of the COMPACT Strategy is funded by UNESCO and its Partners.
The Results Framework of the MDPWHS COMPACT Strategy are centered on three main result areas or key objectives:
− To sustainably conserve the threatened and endemic biodiversity as well maintain the ecosystem integrity and functionality of the MDP WHS and its Buffer Zone in partnership with Communities.
− To conserve and protect the cultural and natural heritage features of the MDP
WHS and its Buffer Zone while contributing to enhancing the area’s spiritual significance and sense of place, as well as supporting sustainable eco-cultural tourism opportunities.
− To develop and enhance the resilience of local communities through the implementation of environmentally friendly and climate-responsive community based livelihood initiatives.