Mesoamerican Reef Fund (MAR Fund)

To inspire innovative, transnational solutions to critical Mesoamerican reef issues through providing meaningful, long-term financial support and trustworthy reef management advice so that future generations can enjoy and benefit from a thriving reef.
May 31, 2011

Moving forward to regional fisheries co-management

Fishermen proposing no-take zones to authorities
Fishermen proposing no-take zones to authorities

We are very excited that our first two pilot projects have had great results and impacts and still on the right track. Now, with our third pilot project on its way, we are convinced that we will get even more satisfactory results.

In Honduras, a co-management action plan for the fishing territories was prepared jointly by APROCUS and FUCSA. FUCSA has awarded APROCUS the administration of an ecological camping site, and is also looking to support the implementation of the action plan developed.

In Mexico, the Puerto Morelos Fishing Cooperative submitted a proposal to modify the Management Plan to expand an existing marine reserve (no-take zone) and to add a new fishing ground. The proposal was accepted. CONAPESCA, the Mexican fisheries authority is extending its patrol activities (with fuel, boats, personnel) to include the no-take zones that the Cooperative is monitoring.

The Punta de Manabique Wildlife Refuge co-management project in Guatemala, which involves three fishing communities within the La Graciosa Bay is moving forward. A co-management area and three no-take zones have already been proposed by the fishing communities. The legal departments of each organization involved in this process (CONAP, DIPESCA and MARN) will evaluate the proposal and the best legal choice to support it.

I take this opportunity to invite you to donate and participate during GlobalGiving Bonus Day on June 15th! During that day and only that day GlobalGiving will match all donations at 30% up to $US1,000 per donor per project. There will be funds available in matching funds only during June 15th. Only on-line donations are eligible for matching. We encourage you to made donations in early, because matching funds will likely run out before the end of the day.

Thanks to your invaluable support, our Community Fisheries Program is extending, and we are moving towards establishing a community marine reserves network within the region.

Co-management workshop with fishermen
Co-management workshop with fishermen
Mar 1, 2011

Spreading the fisheries co-management

In Mexico, the Puerto Morelos Fishing Cooperative have completed the second phase of the monitoring in the established no-take zones and fishing areas within the Puerto Morelos National Park. After two years of coordinated work, they are now negotiating with the authorities how the monitoring will continue and how they can continue coordinating mutual cooperation. In Honduras, the members of the Asociación de Pescadores La Rosita, Cuero y Salado (APROCUS), have concluded their training in these following topics: environmentral education, Fishing Regulations and sustainable economic alternatives. The Co-management Action Plan will be ready by the end of March. Now, thanks to your collaboration and as part of our project, we have started a new co-management initiative in the Punta de Manabique Wildlife Refuge, in Guatemala. This new initiative involves three fishing communities: La Graciosa, Santa Isabel and Punta Gruesa. These communities live and fish within the La Graciosa Bay. This is a very important biological site for hundreds of marine species that come here to reproduce and that provides them good livelihood conditions such as food and protection. The first meetings with the fishing communities took place in each of their villages during the months of January and February. The first meeting with all the authorities involved: the National Council of Protected Areas (CONAP), the Fisheries Direction (DINOPA), the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MARN) and the Mario Dary Foundation (FUNDARY), the protected area administrator, will be held on March 17, 2011. We look forward to keep sharing with you all our achievements, which wouldn't be possible without your constant support!

Dec 3, 2010

Winner of the Gladding Memorial Award 2010

Ms. Angélica Méndez, MAR fisherwoman
Ms. Angélica Méndez, MAR fisherwoman

Last October 2010, the Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute (GCFI) announced that Ms. Angelica Mendez, a fisherwoman from Livingston, Guatemala and Manager of the Guatemalan Caribbean Network of Fishers, was the recipient of the Gladding Memorial Award (GMA), 2010. This, in recognition of her efforts towards conservation and sustainable use of fisheries resources.

Executive Director of GCFI Dr. Bob Glazer commented “The award recipients represent true fisher visionaries and serve as excellent ambassadors for fisheries conservation in the Wider Caribbean. We believe that fishers must be engaged and empowered to be part of the process of managing our shared marine resources in a sustainable manner.”

Ms. Méndez commented “We depend upon fisheries for our livelihoods and it is imperative that our attitudes and our behavior are consistent with sustainable practices so our children and their children can continue to fish.”

Ms. Méndez joined with fishers from around the region for a dedicated Fishers’ Forum. She explained “We’ve looked five years down the road to plan specific programs on how to achieve more sustainable fisheries. Our most important action now is to scale up currently successful local practices to the country and even the region. We want to apply what we have learned here from science to secure our livelihoods and contribute to sustainable fisheries.”

We are very proud about this dedicated hard-working woman’s accomplishment and we are more than convinced that she represents the Mesoamerican Reef fishing community with great dignity and honor.

Congratulations Angelica! You are an inspiration to other fisher women in the MAR region.

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