Building the capacity of Roche Caiman community to adapt to climate change and other threats

 
4.7 RCEAT hosted mangrove planting in the community c MFF Seychelles

RCEAT hosted mangrove planting in the community , Seychelles © MFF

Objectives

This project had four objectives:

  • to organize community groups for planning and implementing project activities, and ensure these continue to function after the end of the project;
  • to train group leaders and the project team in leadership skills, effective project management, and reporting;
  • to build local knowledge of environmental issues, including climate change and disaster risk reduction; and
  • to improve community awareness, understanding and engagement for project activities, in particular building a culture of safety and resilience.

Background

A recent survey by the Seychelles Department of Risk and Disaster Management identified Roche Caiman, a district built on reclaimed land about one metre above sea level, as an area of medium to high risk in the event of a natural or other disaster. A programme addressing healthy ecosystems is important to this community, and so this project was designed to build local capacity to react to changes that may affect environmental security and well-being.
The project addressed the issue of climate change, providing community members with opportunities to learn about potential hazards and risks related to climate change that may affect their livelihoods and property.

Target beneficiaries

The main beneficiaries were community members in Roche Caiman, Zone 1, including local youths trained to run education and awareness programmes.

Outputs

  • Establishment of a highly motivated project team to represent the community and work collaboratively with target beneficiaries.
  • Capacity of project team built to better understand issues related to project implementation and community engagement.
  • Organization of community activities in environmental awareness, coastal restoration, and other learning topics.

Accomplishments and challenges

This was Roche Caiman’s first donor-funded project, and community members incorporated MFF into their social life, including sports and cultural events. They used an evening cultural show to promote the work of MFF, and to thank community members participating in the project.
The project also helped the Roche Caiman to identify other needs in the community, such as a secure and safe path for pedestrians. The community intends to sustain the project by working alongside businesses in the area, and by applying for further funding from the UNDP GEF Small Grants Programme.
During the process of planning and designing this project, a new community-based organization (CBO) was created with the help of MFF. The CBO looks after the work started by the school’s wildlife club mangrove project, and works in collaboration with other partners to restore nearby sites. The CBO was used as a model for replication by Port Glaud district when it set up its own CBO with the help of another SGF project implemented by grantee S4S.

Challenges

At the start of the project, the scheduling of some activities clashed with other community commitments and events. Once a dialogue was established with the community, project activities ran more smoothly.

Contributions to cross-cutting themes

Communications

Posters and brochures advocating Roche Caiman as a climate change-ready community were produced through school art competitions.

Gender equality

Both men and women participated in the project, but women commonly took the lead in project activities.

Climate change

The theme of “Roche Caiman is adapting to climate change” was adopted for all project activities, and a video and oral presentation on climate change widely given at the beginning of the project. The project also organized mangrove and other coastal tree planting events, and held meetings with families in the community to discuss climate change.

Lessons Learned

The project initially targeted Zone 1 of Roche Caiman. As the project progressed, however, managers discovered that all three zones of the community were equally interested and involved in implementation. This creates the possibility of further expansion and consolidation of outputs in the post-project period.

Project Facts

Country

Location

Roche Caiman, Mahé, Seychelles

Topic

Duration

1st Aug 2010 to 28th Feb 2011

MFF Grant Amount

US$8,000

Co-financing Partner

The Seychelles Department of Environment made in-kind contributions to organizing and supporting tree planting activities. The Department of Community Development and National Youth Council made in-kind and cash contributions to project activities.

Implementing Partner

Audrey Sanders
Maryila Dorlin
Wilburt Omath
 
Roche Caiman Environment Action Team (RCEAT)
c/o District Administration, Roche Caiman, Mahé, Seychelles
 
Tel: +248 2719210
+248 2542604
+248 2783425
Email: Audreymsanders1987@gmail.com
dmaryila@yahoo.com
Wof2004@hotmail.com

“This grant is giving us many innovative ideas of how to involve community members in small projects and activities, building their capacity to implement, manage and report on external funds, and so developing a sense of ownership for all projects benefiting all of us in the small community of Roche Caiman.”
— WILBURT OMATH
ROCHE CAIMAN DISTRICT
ADMINISTRATION

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