MFF April Newsletter: Empowering women | Expanding collaboration | Planning for the future

MFF Newsletter, April 2018

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

MFF shares lessons learned at Fiji climate change workshop


At the Mangrove Ecosystems for Climate Change Adaptation workshop in Suva, Fiji, IUCN Asia and MFF shared key takeaways and lessons learned from mangrove restoration initiatives in India and Pakistan. The event was held in collaboration with the Global Island Partnership as part of IUCN’s 70th anniversary celebrations.

Read more here


Nijhum Dwip in Bangladesh: Loud voices for the “quiet island” on World Wetlands Day

To celebrate World Wetlands Day, IUCN, MFF and USAID held an event for over 400 people from the Island of Nijhum Dwip, nicknamed Bangladesh’s “quiet island.” Students participated in essay and art competitions, and attendees listened to open-air lectures to celebrate the ecosystem that supports their lives and livelihoods.

People and Projects

Sewing and candle-making: Empowering women in Keti Bandar

MFF is supporting women-owned candle-making and sewing enterprises in Keti Bandar, a small fishing village in Pakistan's Sindh Province. With the proper tools and training, these entrepreneurs – some as young as 17 – are learning new skills and perfecting them for wider markets. 

Cookstoves for forest conservation in Teknaf, Bangladesh

With support from MFF, the Community Development Centre has introduced an improved type of cookstove to Teknaf, Bangladesh. These “bhandu chulas” require less fuel and produce less smoke than traditional cookstoves, improving the health of the women who use them and reducing the amount of wood they must harvest from the surrounding wildlife sanctuary.

Healthy wetlands, better lives: Traditional mat weaving in the Maldives

MFF and the Maldives Authentic Crafts Cooperative Society are working with women on Fiyoaree Island to revive a centuries-old reed mat weaving technique. In doing so, they also revitalise the wetlands, where for centuries the women of the island have cultivated the reeds they use to make their products. 

Garbage in, garbage out: Waste management in the Maldives

With help from MFF, the Hoandedhoo Island Development Society is tackling waste management on the islands of Nidella and Hoandedhoo, using tried and true techniques to reduce the amount of household garbage choking the waterways and suffocating the beaches.


Report: U.S.-ASEAN Conference on Marine Environmental Issues

This full report provides a detailed overview of the conference, which explored policy strategies for meeting SDG 14: Life Below Water. The event was held jointly by IUCN, MFF and the Stimson Center, with support from the U.S. Department of State, in September 2017.

Pakistan brochure: Marine protected areas


This brochure provides a brief overview of what marine protected areas (MPAs) are, why they are important, and what additional MPAs Pakistan may establish in the future. It also provides detailed information on Astola Island, Pakistan’s first MPA.

MFF in the News

MFF, Marriott and Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University collaborate for Thailand’s coastal resources

Eco-business: MFF and IUCN, as part of an ongoing partnership with Marriott Hotels and Resorts in Thailand, are working with Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University to restore mangroves in Bangkeao District. Instead of starting from scratch, they are building on scattered restoration efforts already carried out in the area, and consolidating them into a single strategy.

Two small projects receive MFF grants

Seychelles Nation: MFF has awarded two grants worth US $25,000 to the Green Islands Foundation for a student-focused mangrove rehabilitation project, and to the Gender and Media Association of the Seychelles to promote women’s involvement in climate change mitigation.

Cambodia hosts national workshop on coastal ecosystem and communities

Agence Kampuchea Presse: A national knowledge sharing workshop was held for key stakeholders, following the completion of MFF’s phase 3 programme in Cambodia, to share best practices in coastal management and lessons learned from the programme.

IUCN, Ministry of Climate Change, Serena Hotel celebrate World Water Day, Int’l Day of Forests

Pakistan Point: To mark World Water Day and International Day of Forests, IUCN, the Pakistan Ministry of Climate Change and Serena Hotel held a celebration to highlight several of IUCN's achievements, particularly in forest management. Among these was MFF's pioneering work to restore mangroves in Pakistan's Port Qasim area.

Upcoming Events

14 May

Joint Donor Meeting

Bangkok, Thailand

15 May

6th Management Committee Meeting

Bangkok, Thailand

18 May

Endangered Species Day


22 May

International Day for Biological Diversity


23 May

World Turtle Day


24-25 May

National Communications Workshop

Kampot, Cambodia

5 June

World Environment Day


8 June

World Oceans Day


3 July

International Plastic Bag Free Day


14 July

Shark Awareness Day


26 July

International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem


Video Gallery

Returning mangroves to Tanjung Panjang

International Day of Forests: Mangrove wetlands may not be your typical forest, but they are some of the most crucial and biodiverse. A team of local experts and NGOs is using ROAM, a tool developed by IUCN, to help communities and local governments in Indonesia restore forest cover to Tanjung Panjang.

Peter Thomson at the Fiji climate change workshop

Peter Thomson, United Nations (UN) Special Envoy for the Ocean and Fiji's Permanent Representative to the UN, discusses the role of mangroves in mitigating the effects of climate change and reducing disaster risk.

Photo credits, top to bottom, left to right: © MFF, © Sayam U. Chowdhury, © IUCN Pakistan, © Aishath Aima Musthafa, © Shital Kumar Nath/CODEC, © Abdulla Adam/UNDP, © IUCN Asia/MFF, © MFF Pakistan, © Eco-business/IUCN, © Seychelles Nation, © Agence Kampuchea Presse, © Pakistan Point, © IUCN Asia, © Pedro Uviedo