Thailand Post-Tsunami Sustainable Coastal Livelihoods Program

Rebuilding Sustainable Livelihoods

A portfolio of activities promoting environmentally sustainable livelihoods and income assistance was developed for target communities. By September 2006 the program supported cash-for-work activities that provided employment and income for approximately 1,500 person days and over 200 individuals. Cash-for-work focused on areas such as health and sanitation, mitigation of coastal hazards, and village greening. Rebuilding fisheries included a limited boat and gear replacement effort and training on safety-at-sea and good fishing practices. The Program worked with the communities, Laemson National Park, Department of Fisheries, local government, and other partners on fisheries and National Park co-management. This included elements such as community enforcement of fishing regulations, establishing small scale marine protected areas, zoning, tourism planning, and training. Training of over 250 villagers was conducted in September and October 2005 on microfinance, revolving fund administration, and business management with the goal of restarting and diversifying livelihoods. Revolving Fund Committees and by-laws were established in each village and in November 2005 the Program distributed $100 thousand in start up capital to the Committees. The community revolving funds released low-interest loans to tsunami affected micro-entrepreneurs. Rapid assessments of priority needs and opportunities for sustainable development were prepared for tourism and aquaculture. Tourism planning with local government authorities began in 2006. Aquaculture training and extension encourages economically viable and low-impact culture technologies.