13 May Empowering Local Communities in Sula to Manage a Marine Protected Area
As part of USAID SEA Project implementation, CTC conducted four-day intensive community training on principles of Marine Protected Area (MPA) in Sula Islands which was divided into two batches. The aims of this training are to raise awareness on the concept of MPA, to learn logical thinking on the benefit and mechanism for an MPA to function and to inspire for ideas and getting commitment for local community involvement in MPA establishment process for Governor Declare process. The participants consisted of two representatives per village, mostly were represented by village leader and secretary of total 34 villages in Sula Islands.
Materials about marine biodiversity, marine protected areas, rules and regulation, zoning system, sustainable tourism, community participation and stakeholder identification were given. Using adult learning type method, participants followed several activities both in the class and outside the class. In the class, participant actively involved in discussion and motivated in pre-test and post-test as well as individual quiz. Further, outside the class participants played tragedy of the commons game, fish length identification and on how to count and calculate coral coverage.
Most of participants found this training was very important. They expected this training to sustain and can also be held for other local society in their own village, even they expected this training can be held longer due to the materials given were compact therefore needed more time to digest. In the end of training session, participants discussed on what follow up actions that they can do. They came up with ideas to build up an integrated team to support the gazettement and establishment of MPA. Further, they also eager to establish monitoring team as well as patrolling team. Following the training, a public consultation was held. Participants who are most of village leaders agreed to sign and commit to support the gazettement and establishment of MPA in Sula Islands. A total of 20 village leaders, two district leaders, and 35 other participants signed the agreement.