The Pwani Project: Tanzania Coastal Ecosystem Conservation

The Pwani Project: Tanzania Coastal Ecosystem Conservation


Human Dimensions of the Coastal Ecosystem

Pwani concentrates on three aspects of the human dimensions of coastal ecosystems: climate change adaptation, economic growth, and HIV/AIDS mitigation and prevention activities. The goal is to create wealthier and more empowered communities. Wealthier communities are created not by simply increasing people’s economic health and standing, but improving as well other factors that contribute to quality of life—factors such as increasing people’s resilience to the impacts of climate change stressors; and improving their access to health services that shape their overall physical well being, including reducing their vulnerability to quality-of-life reducing diseases such as HIV-AIDS. It is this combination of socio-economic “wealth” factors that the Pwani project seeks for its beneficiaries. In terms of economic wealth, Pwani will help coastal entrepreneurs move up the value chain by diversifying and improving production and marketing of goods and services for local and international trade of natural, non-traditional marine fisheries and coastal ecosystem assets; helping provide access to capital; and improving connections between industry groups and improving the investment and market climate.

1. Increasingly resilient communities are enabled to adapt to climate change impacts. Pwani work at the District and village level on coastal climate change and effective approaches to reduce vulnerability and harm from climate change impacts. The emphasis will be on climate change and coastal adaptation education and awareness, vulnerability assessment, adaptation planning, and implementation of small, doable adaptation actions. In the four years of the project, the intention is to demonstrate, document and learn from the practical experience of doing this in seven coastal villages, each selected with District and village concurrence, and based on criteria of expressed interest and diversity of vulnerability characteristics as well as opportunities for proactive adaptation actions. In the first year, Pwani will work toward completing the full process of adaptation planning in two villages in Bagamoyo.

2. National coastal adaptation capacity increased with sectoral policy mainstreaming. The project seeks to catalyze sectoral mainstreaming of climate change as well as establish a national forum for discussing coastal climate change and adaptation issues, and supporting climate change education and information sharing. Working with DOE and NEMC, Pwani will facilitate establishment and operations of a planning body, tentatively as a sub-group to the NEMC Science and Technical Working Group, to address coastal climate change mainstreaming. In the first year, work will focus on designing the institutional placement and terms of reference for the climate change mainstreaming body.

Videos featuring Pwani’s adaptation efforts and approaches can be found here:

Climate Change Adaptation for Tanzania’s Coastal Villages  (full length version, 10 minutes)   Tanzania Climate Change Adaptation: The Pwani Approach Edit (7 minutes, features just the general approach)  Tanzania Climate Change Adaptation: Coastal Village Assessments Edit (7 minutes, features just the village experience)

3. Communities benefitting economically from NRM-based businesses through increased income, access to credit, new markets, and enhanced goods and services. Value added activities in small scale ecotourism, fisheries and half-pearl oyster jewelry-making will be supported through mini-grants, savings and loan mechanisms, technical assistance, and training. In the project area, tourism based on nature is growing rapidly and it is expected that this growth will continue, particularly as the demand for shorefront property increases with expectations of much expanded visitor traffic to Saadani National Park. Assessments of ecotourism in the Pangani District and dolphin tourism in the Menai Bay area, have been prepared and a fisheries value chain for the Bagamoyo District is in progress. These assessments provide a baseline of current operations and infrastructure development, to map out ecotourism and fisheries participants and their interests, and define entry points for catalytic actions. The goal is improve the enabling conditions for planned and environmentally sustainable ecotourism growth, and to demonstrate and share good practices in ecotourism.

4. Jewelry making and entrepreneurship development. In the Pwani project, the model of community no-take reserves combined with pearl grow-out and jewelry-making are being expanded to new villages and marine sites. Capacity building in craftsmanship and entrepreneurship skills are provided to the new sites and product value chain to existing jewelry makers and half pearl farmers in Menai Bay.

5. HIV/AIDS prevention and mitigation activities improve life for those living with HIV/AIDS and lead to quality behavior change among fishing communities. Pwani will work with UZIKWASA, a Pangani-based NGO,  to implement activities related to HIV/AIDS prevention and mitigation primarily in the communities adjacent to SANAPA and the larger Pangani district including coastal communities north of the Pangani River. Our focus will be on HIV/AIDS prevention, promoting behavior change among fishing communities through interactive theater, radio, and the development of other information/education/communication (IEC) materials, such as posters and leaflets. Behavior change will be promoted within targeted mainland communities through innovative communications activities based on real-life issues/scenarios that contribute to the spread of HIV. The issue of “mobile men with money” will be addressed through communication campaigns in coastal villages (e.g. theater and radio shows that address parents’ roles in early forced marriages). Pwani will also support implementation of village multisectoral AIDS action plan activities that encourage behavior change among visiting fishermen.