CRM Project Receives Commendation
Lian Fisher Folk Association (LFA), Inc., DLSU-COSCA’s partner organization of local fishers in Sitio KayReyna, Lumaniag, Lian, Batangas continue the regular reef checking / monitoring of their Marine Protected Area (MPA). While we understand that the necessary precise information on the current status of Talim Bay coral reef is being undertaken in coordination with the DLSU Biology Department and or the Br. Alfred Sheilds, FSC Marine Station, the key to getting valuable source of information for program stakeholders to conduct effective management of the coral reef of Talim Bay heavily depends on the involvement of community members or as represented by our partner local people’s organization (PO), the Lian Fisher folk Association (LFA), Inc.
A common objective of LFA’s reef monitoring is to obtain up-dated knowledge on the status of the coral reef. Also, LFA members, COSCA project staffer or LGU Lian’s Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Officer undertake reef checking to evaluate management measures implemented for the Talim bay MPA. Given these objectives and considering the potential of the organization of local fishers, COSCA, in consultation with the fishers in the community, in partnership with the LGU Lian’s MENRO and with other stakeholders identified problems besetting Talim bay and the community and the listed opportunities available in the area. Possible options and solutions were explored, basically to protect and conserve the natural resource base or the important portion of the municipal coral reef, seagrass beds and mangrove forest of the bay area.
Key to managing the Coastal Resource Management initiative is capacitating our partner LFA. LFA members were slowly being trained on relevant skills for reef monitoring. Initially, LGU Lian’s partnership with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources Office (DENR) trained some of the LFA members to become Reef Rangers and First Aid personnel. To further enhance the local people’s skills as Reef Rangers, COSCA, in partnership with the Australian Aid – Philippines Australia Community Assistance Program (Aus-Aid PACAP), and LGU Lian supported the procurement of necessary equipment and the training of additional Fishers to be full-fledged Reef Rangers.
As Reef Rangers, the Fishers are equipped with the necessary skills when facilitating reef appreciation activities for students, faculty and other guests of LFA. The Scuba Diving training attended by representatives of LGU Lian, COSCA and Fishers aided the local Fishers organization in the regular reef monitoring of the Talim bay coral reef.
This commitment of the local Fishers to help conserve and protect their natural resource base and the capacity building provided by public and private organizations, such as the GlobalGiving earned for the De La Salle University a Highly Commended Distinction in the 2016 Global University Partnership on Environment and Sustainability (GUPES) Green Gown Awards (the only Philippine University to receive the award among finalists from Asia Pacific. DLSU’s entry to GUPES highlights COSCA’s consultative process with the fishing community.
DLSU President, Dr. Raymundo B. Suplido, FSC, PhD shares, “This has become our source of institutional pride and at the same time a reminder that these types of initiative should be replicated in other areas, as well.”
Fishers to monitor the reef