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As promised, here are some of the fabulous photographs of Thuli Brilliance Makama from the Goldman Prize ceremony.  Thanks to ELAW Staff Attorney Liz Mitchell for all photos (except the photo of Thuli with the Ouroboros – which was provided by the Goldman Prize organization.)

Goldman Prize CeremonyThuli & ELAW staff

Thuli Makama with Goldman Prize

On this Earth Day, we invite you to join us in congratulating Thuli Brilliance Makama on winning the Goldman Prize!

Thuli is the only public interest environmental lawyer in Swaziland and is the Director of Yonge Nawe (SiSwati for “you too must conserve the environment”) an organization committed to environmental justice.  She has done fantastic work and risked everything to give citizens a voice in protecting Swaziland’s environment. You can read more about her great work here.  We are gathering messages of congratulations from around the world and will present them to Thuli before she returns to Swaziland next week.  If you wish to add a message, please  click here.

If the above link doesn’t work with your browser, just post a note in the comments section below and we’ll forward it on to Thuli.

What a great way to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day!

ELAW partner Thuli Brilliance Makama of Swaziland has been awarded the 2010 Goldman Prize!  The Goldman Prize is the highest honor a grassroots environmental advocate can receive — sort of like a “green” Nobel Prize.  ELAW is thrilled to have nominated Thuli and is thrilled that now the rest of the world will learn about her fabulous work.

Thuli told the Goldman Prize organizers:  “I defend the rights of local communities to participate in environmental decision-making so that future generations may benefit.”

The Goldman Foundation selected Thuli for the Prize because of her courageous efforts to fight Big Game Parks — a private corporation that owns and operates two game parks and has been granted authority to manage one of Swaziland’s national parks.  Thuli and her organization have been working to  ensure that local community members have a voice in the management of their environment.  Goldman notes that Thuli’s “success in challenging malpractices in environmental management is a huge step forward in the struggle to include local people in conservation efforts in Swaziland.”

ELAW staff members Lori Maddox, Jen Gleason and Liz Mitchell will attend the ceremony tonight — and have promised to send photos.

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