Twenty-two sub-national government forestry officials, from Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam, participated in the five-day event. This stakeholder event, the first in a series of four events, was especially critical given that sub-national officials are often offered much less regional learning opportunities than national-level officials whereas they often have the greatest direct interaction with local communities.
The Regional Learning Group is innovative in that it allows sub-national officials from the four countries to participate and contribute in their respective languages. Simultaneous translation in the four Lower Mekong languages was provided to facilitate communication among the participants, and visually oriented facilitation approaches were employed to ensure full engagement.. The participants will continue to meet bi-annually for the next two years.