PACOS Trust, Sabah (Partners of Community Organisation)
PACOS Trust is a community-based organisation (CBO) dedicated to supporting indigenous communities in Sabah, Malaysia. Although only registered under the Trustees Ordinance (Sabah) in 1997, it has been actively involved with communities since 1987 as a different legal entity. PACOS Trust sees itself as an organisation that strives to empower indigenous communities through systematic building and strengthening of community organisations, which can act collectively or on their own. PACOS Trust also sees the need to support networking among organisations struggling to assert their rights over community resources and revitalizing indigenous systems.
PACOS Trust supports community organisations in 14 districts in 23 geographical areas, with each organisation determining and implementing its own area plan and work programme. It has 60 personnel; almost all are working in their own community but also contribute to the organisation by being part of different ad-hoc committees as resource persons depending on their skills and knowledge.
PACOS Trust hopes to have contacts in all 21 rural districts in Sabah with at least one community organisation in each district. It also plans to boost its work on Land Rights by planning a 4-year land campaign, continue its efforts to ensure active participation in regulating and protecting access to biological diversity and indigenous knowledge, participate and contribute actively in the Malaysia and Asia network, and provide input into development-related issues faced by indigenous communities.