Women's Group Empowerment through Mangrove-Based Product Processing

 
WIRE G project activityc2014 MFF AHala

Mootilango village women groups in a mangrove planting activ ... , Mootilango village, Duhiadaa District, Pohuwato Regency, Gorontalo Province © MFF IUCN, 2014

Objectives

To improve women’s group livelihood under the bio-right concept and to enhance mangrove area coverage along riverbank in the village

Background

Mootilango village lies between two active rivers, with high suitability for mangrove planting, except small part which are not suitable due to the ecological condition or land tenure issue. Naturally, mangrove areas growing along 3 km from coastal toward land areas. It was indicated that a total of 591 ha land was potentially designated to be mangrove areas, of which 368 ha were existing mangrove already. A total of 222 ha mangrove areas has been converted into fish pond.

Community livelihood in Mootilango village (which is surrounded by mangrove forests) is mostly from fishpond aquaculture and mangrove crab harvesting. In 1996, the Government of Gorontalo Regency where Mootilango is located supported economic programmes using intensive aquaculture. This accelerated the conversion of mangroves into ponds. As a result, the surrounding mangrove forest has been degraded. Furthermore, due to unsustainable techniques, resource-depleted ponds in the area are often abandoned. Without proper rehabilitation, the mangrove areas in Mootilango village will continue to be depleted, negatively affecting the livelihood of communities.

Using the Bio-Rights concept, the project will introduce mangrove-based food processing as a small business activity to five women groups in the village. Women will be trained to produce and market mangrove-based food products as an alternative source of income. Concurrently, as part of the Bio-Rights concept, women who are part of the project will replant and protect the surrounding mangrove areas.

Target beneficiaries

Direct beneficiaries are five women groups in Mootilango (50 members).  

Outputs

  1. 54,720 mangrove seedlings were planted in 5 ha riverbanks by women’s groups – under Bio-Right Concept. The growth rate was 90%;
  2. 50 women  received training on food production (cake) from mangrove and Nypa sugar production;
  3. 5 women groups were established with their respective expertise on Katu production (katu is roof made of leaves), woven mat, flower artisans, pastry cook and tailor;
  4. Women’s group network (involving several groups)  supporting best practices on mangrove management emerged on May 10th, 2014 and received training on organizational management by Provincial Government (under Women Empowerment Bureau of Gorontalo Province);
  5. Business capital was disbursed to 50 women under 5 women’s groups in two instalments on 24 February 2015 and 5 April 2015 and a set of bio-right agreement established and implemented.

Accomplishments and challenges

  • Five community groups, each consisted of 10 members (total 50 members) were established during the initiation of the project;
  • The following trainings have been implemented, prior to the implementation of the rehabilitation and livelihood activities:
  1. Training on organization management for 5 women groups
  2. Two days training on the production of mangrove-based food products, participated by 5 community groups
  3. Two days training on the production of nypa sugar for 5 women groups
  •  A total of 50,000seedlings had been prepared in nursery. All seedlings had been planted in the riverbank of Mootilango river. In addition to the seedlings, 14,720 planting was done directly from propagules. Total rehabilitation areas: 5 ha;
  • The following activities have been implemented aimed on the improvement of community’s livelihood:
  1. Five community  groups have been established, each consisted of 10 members (total 50 people).
  2. Production of mangrove-based food products, including cookies and drinks through Bio-Rights mechanism. Under this scheme, project provided financial support to community group, to be used for livelihood improvement activities. In return, community group members were asked to fully participated on the rehabilitation programme. An agreement has been reached to implement this scheme, witnessed by Head of Village;
  3. Close collaboration with other community groups of PKPKL UNG and KSL Padakauang, that had successfully developed some of mangrove products. This also showed the excellent example of the cross capacity sharing among MFF Grantees.

 

Contributions to cross-cutting themes

- Climate change and disaster risk reduction

54,720 mangrove seedlings were planted in 5 ha riverbanks. The planting is conducted to restore the ecosystem health and safeguard community livelihood.

- Gender equality

50 women  received training on food production (cake) from mangrove and Nypa sugar production.

 

 

Lessons Learned

  • Mangrove seedlings should be planted (nursery site should be located) near inter tidal zone and exposed to brackish water. Limited access to inter tidal zone and brackish water will increase seedling mortality rate, especially when the planting/propagation is initiated at the beginning of dry season;
  • In relation to livelihood activities/the initiation of small scale businesses, training on income generation followed by the production might take some time (going through some trials and errors). It is hard to estimate percentage of the benefit per month from the activities that instant, and the project period is also relatively short (10-12 months). The most reasonable outputs than can can be expected from these activities are knowledge sharing to the direct beneficiaries (groups involved) on how to process fish and other products to become commodities with more economic value and entrepreneurial spirit. Moreover, the training should be held in the proper time.

Project Facts

Country

Location

Mootilango village, Duhiadaa district, Pohuwato Regency, Gorontalo Province

Topic

Duration

6th May 2014 to 5th May 2015

MFF Grant Amount

IDR 196,500,000

Implementing Partner

Woman Institute for Research and Empowerment of Gorontalo (WIRE-G)

Jln Perum Taman Indah BF No 11 

Jln Taman Hiburan 1 RT 03 RW 05

Kelurahan Wongkaditi Barat Kecamatan 

Kota Utara, Kota Gorontalo

Indonesia

Contact person: Ms Kusmawaty Matara

Mobile: +6285240066934

Email address: kusmawaty.matara83@gmail.com

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