SUPPORTING A RISING TIDE OF
COMMUNITY-LED COASTAL CONSERVATION VENTURES
Tanzania’s extensive and resource-rich coastal and marine environment supports the livelihoods of millions in the country and is the mainstay of the artisanal fishing industry and coastal tourism and is the location of key national infrastructure including industry and port development.
Yet, weak management and governance challenged by geographical location, a growing population, a changing climate, improved and changing fishing gears, and increasing demands for coastal resources are pushing the environment to its limits.
In 2010, founding members of the Mwambao team travelled the length of the Tanzanian coast to learn more about what is taking place to address these mounting pressures.
We saw that while much is being done, from community-led management initiatives to NGO-driven projects, from marine protected areas to integrated watershed management projects, there is little crossover, projects come and go, and often efforts are carried out in isolation.
Communities were often unclear of their roles in governance and lacked knowledge and ability to represent themselves.
Our potential role was clear – to facilitate learning; to build capacity and confidence through knowledge and practice; to connect local communities together to share information and experience; and to create links with outside resources and networks.
Mwambao Coastal Community Network was founded in 2010 and our sister organisation, MCCC (Marine and Coastal Community Conservation) Ltd, was formed in 2020.
Our founding members
Mwambao recognizes the power and potential of coastal communities in conserving marine ecosystems and improving peoples’ lives.
We listen, support, strengthen, and energize communities to take the lead to effectively manage their marine resources by building their skills and knowledge to manage and market these resources, setting up systems to fairly and sustainably govern them, and sharing skills and best practices to learn from other coastal communities.
We work alongside the government to ensure communities have the resources and skills they need and that policies are supportive of their efforts.
Conservation practices must provide a return, and we support efforts to help make that happen.
My ambition is to see our coastal communities live in dignity and harmony, with improved livelihood opportunities and taking an active role in the sustainable management of their coastal resources.