ADD implements SADC/GIZ funded coastal protection project (Mauritius and Seychelles)

ADD/SADC/GIZ Project
Coral reef restoration (Mauritius) and Beach monitoring (Seychelles)
involving secondary school students


Introduction

The negative impacts of climate change on key socio-sectors, natural earth systems and resources in the South West Indian Ocean are already being felt. One of the most suitable options for the countries in the region is to develop and implement adaptation strategies. A healthy coastal zone is vital for the economies of both Mauritius and Seychelles. Climate change and intensive human use are causing coral bleaching and mortality, decreasing the ability of the coral reef barrier to protect sandy beaches from erosion and adversely affecting coral living resources.



The project

The one year project “Engaging youth and community in coral reef restoration and beach monitoring” is being implemented by ADD in collaboration with GASAT within the framework of the SADC/GIZ Project “Transboundary Use and Protection of Natural Resources in the SADC Region” to contribute to the rehabilitation of coral reefs and protection and conservation of beach resources. It is a joint Project involving NGOs in Mauritius and Seychelles. The Mauritius component is focused on coral farming and the one in Seychelles is on beach monitoring. It is terminating in February 2015.



   Project Objectives

·         Enhance sensitization of students on climate change and its impacts and advocate effective measures to be taken to mitigate and adapt to them

·         Conduct interviews by students in order to gather indigenous information about the changes in beach profile and coral reef status over the last decades.

·         Engage school students and local community namely women, skippers and fishermen in coral farming in Mauritius and in beach monitoring in Seychelles to gain hands-on practical experience and become ambassadors to promote the conservation and protection of coastal resources and ecosystems in the face of climate change

·         Promote an exchange programme between the two countries to share experience and knowledge gained during the implementation of the project.




Partnership

The project was initiated by ADD in collaboration with GASAT.

Partners include:

            •            Gaetan Raynal Secondary School - 10 students from the upper forms

            •                   Mauritius Oceanography Institute, The Ministry of Fisheries and the NGO Coral Reef Conservation provide technical assistance

            •                 ADD and GASAT experts

            •                 Hotel Tamarin. An aquarium will be installed coral farming for educational aspects and for tourists

Sponsorship

GIZ, a German Enterprise for international cooperation, is funding the project in the context of the SADC environmental programme. GIZ Experts visited Mauritius and Seychelles in July 2014 to provide guidance and monitor progress. Their second visit is planned at the end of February 2015.


Activities implemented so far



Ø  Sensitisation programme with presentation on marine resources, in particular on coral reefs and coral farming by the NGO Reef Conservation, Ministry of Fisheries and Mauritius Oceanography Institute

Ø  Guided visit of the Blue Bay Marine Park in the south using a glass bottom boat to observe the different coral species and coral reef ecosystems.

Ø  Visit of school students and local community members to Albion Fisheries Research Centre of the Ministry of Fisheries for briefing on land-based coral nurseries.

Ø  A 2 day visit at Anse La Raie with activities on collection of water sample at different sites and analysis in the Laboratory under the guidance of scientists from the NGO Reef Conservation. Other activities included a visit in a glass bottom boat to the coral site monitored regularly by the Reef Conservation, mangrove area and wetlands at Anse La Raie. The four groups of students made a presentation on their respective findings at the end of the second day.

Ø  The placement of an aquarium at hotel Tamarin for coral farming. In the second week of January 2015, the students, with the help of an MOI officer will be shown how to cut coral into fragments and glue them on concrete blocks before being transferred to the aquarium for growth. The monitoring will be carried out by the students after the termination of the project.


Ø A visit to Seychelles including 3 students and experts was organised from 26 to 31 January 2015. The visit provided an opportunity to the Mauritian students to showcase their activities on coral farming and learn what has been done by the Seychelles students on beach monitoring.


 





Future activities

The following activities are planned to complete the project:

·         Production of brochures, posters and flyers for wide distribution. A documentary on the implementation of the project is under preparation.

·         Two students and a school teacher from Seychelles are expected to visit Mauritius at the beginning of February.

·         Organisation of a closing ceremony at the end of the project.



[Updated on 08.02.2015]