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Creating Marine Protected Areas in Sierra Leone

We work in Sierra Leone to support its government to sustainably manage its marine and coastal resources and biodiversity conservation. We focus on the establishment of two Marine Protected Areas in the country.

Action Description:

Based on the number of serious but varied threats to Sierra Leone’s rich and biologically diverse marine and coastal zone, along with the clear motivation of national partners to become more involved in the PRCM, one of the key recommendations of a PRCM mission to Sierra Leone in April 2007 was the development of a pilot project for national sustainable coastal zone management. This project is still in a development stage but, importantly, a partnership between PRCM and Sierra Leonean partners has already been launched, and this initiative has the support of different institutions in the country. 

Overall objective

The overall objective is to support Sierra Leone in its management efforts of marine and coastal resources and biodiversity conservation. The project will focus on the establishment of at least one Marine Protected Areas and small scale pilot activities, supported by communications and capacity building components. The pilot activities will represent the conservation, fisheries and GIZC components of the PRCM and will be decided on in the project inception phase. Each of these small-scale activities must have a demonstration quality in order that lessons learned and best practices based on concrete examples can be promoted around the country for the improvement of coastal and marine resources management. 

Impacts of the project

Impacts of the project will include the designation of Sierra Leone’s MPAs, which will contribute to improve the conservation status of key habitats and species, and enhance the representativeness, coherence and functionality of the regional MPA network RAMPAO. The project will enable engagement of local and national stakeholders, through their participation in the process, reinforced capacity in coastal and marine management and biodiversity conservation issues, and improved knowledge through publicising best practices from the pilot demonstration projects. Finally, the pilot activities themselves will have a direct benefit to resource conservation, albeit on a small and local scale.

Action Partners:

Conservation Society for Sierra Leone, and the Ministries of Fisheries and Marine Resources, and Agriculture, Forestry and Food Security, and the Institution for Marine Biology and Oceanography.  

Donors: Basket of PRCM funded by the MAVA Foundation, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands Dakar and AECID, through Wetlands International and the Fondation Internationale de Banc D'Arguin

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