Balabac, Palawan - The community visioning activity conducted by the GIZ Sulu-Sulawesi Marine Ecoregion (SSME) Project together with its partner agency Biodiversity Management Bureau revealed the critical role of a healthy environment in providing a promising future for the lives of the coastal villagers in Barangay Ramos and Barangay Salang in Balabac, Palawan.
Participated in by more than 50 residents from these island barangays in the southernmost portion of Palawan, local stakeholders composed of fishermen, housewives and members of the barangay council shared to the GIZ-SSME Project their visions for their families and the community.
More than 60 vision statements were realized from the two barangays, signifying commitments to protect the environment to ensure food security and income generation. There were expressions of optimism to experience well-being through improved socio-economic conditions and equitable opportunities for their children to obtain college degrees; to be active participants in transforming their barangays into top tourist destinations; and most importantly, to take part in reporting illegal activities such as dynamite fishing and sea turtle poaching in the areas.
These vision statements reinforce the effectiveness of the information, education, and communication (IEC) campaigns done by the project team in these areas. Coastal communities are slowly realizing the practical significance of biodiversity conservation. #