MFF April Newsletter: Empowering women | Conserving coastal ecosystems | Developing sustainable livelihoods

MFF Newsletter, April 2017

This newsletter is published by Mangroves for the Future (MFF), a unique partner-led initiative, co-chaired by IUCN and UNDP, to promote investment in coastal ecosystem conservation for sustainable development. 

Feature Story

Gender equality: A game changer for nature


In the Maldives, women are receiving training in home-based income-generating activities through an MFF project. In this opinion editorial published on International Women’s Day, Aban Marker Kabraji, Regional Director, IUCN Asia, shares the story of Leena, a mother of three, who actively helps provide for her family while playing an important role in building ecosystem resilience.

Read more here


Mangrove crab: Ecologically significant and economically promising


In Situbondo, Indonesia, an ecosystem-dependent coastal community has found a lucrative source of income through crab fattening under an MFF livelihood development project.

Astola Island as a Marine Protected Area


Through its National Coordinating Body, MFF Pakistan is supporting the process of declaring Astola Island, a nesting ground for endangered sea turtles, a Marine Protected Area. One of the activities includes undertaking a situational analysis of the island in collaboration with the Pakistan Navy.

Wetlands for disaster risk reduction


Utilising ancestral knowledge to conserve wetlands like mangroves is critical in protecting the Maldives from the adverse effects of climate change.

People and Projects

More mangroves, less smoke: Enhancing resilience of coastal ecosystems and communities in Cox’s Bazar

With the support of a project in Bangladesh that is installing fuel-efficient cookstoves in households, women like Beauty Das are using less wood. This allows them to save more money and play an important role in combating climate change.

Coastal community empowerment through mangrove and coastal vegetation rehabilitation

A project in Indonesia is empowering communities and enhancing resilience of coastal ecosystems by rehabilitating mangroves, raising awareness about conserving vital ecosystems and conducting capacity building activities that are helping to generate additional income.

Photo Stories

Ukulhas: Everything from exemplary waste management to innovative farming


Once a model island for waste management practices, Ukulhas, located 40 miles south of Malé, the capital of the Maldives, is now also known for teaching women alternative sustainable livelihood activities such as controlled irrigation and shade house farming. With these new skills, the women are able to cultivate vegetable crops and become entrepreneurs.                                                                    

Faresmaathoda: From dumpsites to roads and parks

A waste management system, developed by MFF in collaboration with Red Productions movie studio in 2015, is helping keep Faresmaathoda Island in the Maldives clean. Through the rehabilitation of old waste management infrastructures and the formulation of waste policies by local community members, dumpsites have been transformed into roads and parks.                  


Learnings on climate change adaptation in the Bay of Bengal documented in new book

In this book entitled Climate Change in the Bay of Bengal Region: Exploring Sectoral Cooperation for Sustainable Development, climate change specialists explore the importance of intergovernmental cooperation to combat climate change in the Bay of Bengal.

Book launch - Hope for the future, MFF Thailand



To celebrate World Wetlands Day, MFF launched a photo book that captures the spirit of it's 10-year investments in three Thai provinces. The visually stunning book also gives us a glimpse into the lives of people that rely on coastal ecosystems for their survival.

MFF in the Media

Shrimping horizons

This article, published in VIV Asia Digital Magazine, reports on how IUCN's Mangroves and Markets project is helping train shrimp farmers in certified organic shrimp production, while ensuring the conservation of mangrove ecosystems in Viet Nam. 

Sea cucumber hatchery to give momentum to industry

This media piece on the construction of a hatchery that promises to give a boost to the sea cucumber industry in Sri Lanka cites a study funded by MFF.

Upcoming Events

26 May

Joint Donor meeting

This meeting provides MFF donors with programme updates and determines coordination mechanisms to improve the synergies between MFF activities, donor activities and country work programmes.

29 May

Management Committee meeting

Held once a year, the Management Committee meeting focuses on reviewing progress on follow-up to annual Regional Steering Committee decisions, and ensuring effective management and timely implementation of the MFF Programme. 

Photo and Video Gallery

Photo credits, top to bottom, left to right: © Aishath Niyaz, © Cynthia Nurcahya, © IUCN Pakistan, © Abdulla Adam, © Enamul Mazid Khan Siddique/IUCN, © Simphoni Akar Rumput, ©  Abdulla Adam & Makdhooma Nazim, © Abdulla Adam & Makdhooma Nazim, © IUCN, © MFF Thailand, © Steen Christensen, © Viv Asia Digital Magazine, The Poultry Site, © The Sunday Times, © Abdulla Adam & Makdhooma Nazim, © Green Fins, © Ann Moey