Trao Reef Marine Reserve Sustained by Local Community, VietNameNet, 06/28/06
Source: VietNam Net Bridge
The Centre for Marine Life Conservation and Community Development (MCD) has pledged to continue its biodiversity project preserving coral reef ecosystems and promoting ecotourism.
The Trao Reef Marine Reserve project, located in the central coastal province of Khanh Hoa, extends through the 2006-07 period, aiming to strengthen the capacity of community members to manage the protected marine areas they live in.
The venture is funded by McKnight, Oak and Rufford foundations and the Australian Government's Department for the Environment and Heritage, who collectively contributed US$100,000.
After five years of implementation, the project has developed the locally-managed reserve involved a diverse range of activities, including developing environmental awareness and management skills for the communities and local authorities, and forming a local management board with a core group of community members.
Reserve management regulations were also formulated and agreed on by all stakeholders and then issued by the district government.
The two-year phase will focus on poor fishing families in Van Hung Commune. They will be assisted in managing the marine reserve and encouraged to control fishing methods that have destroyed the coral reef in the area. This will involve skills training and knowledge-building to properly manage the marine reserve and enforce regulations.
The local people will also be supported in improving their livelihoods through ecotourism, and will be assisted in developing business skills to host tourists and do guided tours.
The project will also target local government officials to encourage awareness of sustainable environmental development and opportunities to cultivate ecotourism; local civil society groups; other fishing communities and the wider coastal communities of Vietnam.