Seven new projects have been selected by MedPAN for funding under the specific Call for Small Projects launched in October 2017. These projects have an average duration of 8 months and are in the process of being started. They are funded in the framework of the UNEP / MAP project financed by the European Union and the Albert II of Monaco Foundation.

This specific Call for Small Projects is intended to support actions related to the strengthening of communication and the sustainable financing of MPAs in 5 target countries: Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt and Lebanon.

Algeria – Association Barbarous

Habibas islands nature marine reserve

Title of the project: Monograph of the emblematic Habibas Islands MPA

Theme: Strengthening of  communication

Objective of the project:

The Habibas Islands Marine Nature Reserve is the first protected area established in Algeria (2003); it is also the first Specially Protected Area of ​​Mediterranean Importance (SPAMI). Under the tutelage of the Commissariat National du Littoral (CNL), the reserve, which enjoys remarkable biodiversity, has benefited since its creation of a number of activities implemented in the framework of international collaborations. But a management unit with dedicated funds is struggling to take off and more active support from stakeholders and local decision makers is needed to achieve real management.

The Barbarous association, commissioned by the CNL to co-manage the reserve, wishes with this project to produce a coffee table book to promote the natural heritage of the reserve, to shed light on the progress recorded on this site in terms of management and conservation, but also to take stock of the difficulties encountered during a participatory management process. With this book, Barbarous intends to raise the awareness of decision-makers and actors, especially on a local scale, to the importance of the effective protection of the Habibas Islands MPA and to advocate to contribute to mobilize sustainable financing for the management of the MPA of the Habibas islands.

Total budget: 20 000€

MedPAN financing: 5 000€

Algeria – Commissariat National du Littoral

Habibas islands nature marine reserve

Title of the project: Financing mechanisms and plan for the sustainable management of the Habibas Islands MPA

Theme: Sustanaible financing

Objective of the project:

 

The management plan for the Habibas Islands MPA was finalised in 2013 as part of the “Development support of the CNL” project by the Conservatoire du Littoral. Its implementation was deferred to 2015 with 5-year management objectives focused on 3 components: conservation, development and development.

But currently, the sources of funding for the implementation of this management plan are those of the state budget and other funding in the framework of international projects. These financings are both inadequate and punctual.

This small MedPAN project therefore aims to analyze the current sources of funding and to propose an integrated and sustainable financing plan for the management activities of the MPA.

Total budget: 23 300€

MedPAN financing: 17 000€

Egypt – Environics Environment & Development Advisors

Al Sallum Marine Protected Area

Title of the project: Development of a business plan for the MPA of El Sallum

Theme : Sustainable financing

Objective of the project:

 

 

The Marine Protected Area of ​​Sallum was created in 2010. It is the 28th natural protectorate out of 30 and the first located in the Mediterranean Sea. It is part of a protectorate network under the umbrella of the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA).

Faced with the lack of state funding for protectorates, EEAA has promoted a self financing policy and 3 business plans have already been developed in the Red Sea. Today it’s Sallum’s turn.

This small MedPAN project aims to develop this business plan with sustainable and ecological financing mechanisms in line with the objectives of the protectorate of Sallum. The development of the business plan will take place in parallel with the development of the management plan, which will allow a good synergy between the conservation objectives and the options to finance them. Problems such as over-fishing, over-hunting, of birds in particular, over-grazing or bad management practices will be at the heart of the establishment of 2 plans.

The development of the business plan will first be based on an evaluation of existing data on Sallum, on existing business plans and on the institutional context and then on a field study of the situation and needs as seen by the various stakeholders.

Total budget: 23 300€

MedPAN financing: 17 000€

Egypt – Nature Conservation Egypt

Al Sallum Marine Protected Area

Title of the project: Effective management through strategic communication

Theme: Strengthening of communication

Objective of the projet:

 

Sallum MPA suffers from insufficient resources and technical capacity on many fronts. Seven years after its declaration as a protected marine area (the first on the Egyptian Mediterranean coast), there is still no administrative office and the management plan is still under development. There is no entry fee, and the only financial resource available to the park comes from the government’s meager budget allocations. The area is sensitive because of the proximity to the Libyan border and the few visitors who obtain visit permits are usually avid ornithologists or naturalists.

In general, the MPA is considered as a terrestrial park with a surrounding marine area. The focus has always been on the management of land resources, and many local actors and communities are interested in trade rather than conservation. This is due to an economically impoverished local community and a general misunderstanding of the value of marine natural resources and biodiversity. So far, communication activities have been sporadic or minimal and have mainly been implemented through official government bodies and channels. As a result, stakeholders in the region are intellectually and emotionally disconnected from the MPA and management of marine ecosystems is at an all-time low.

This small project intends to develop a communication strategy for the El Sallum MPA and put in place sustainable communication tools to implement this strategy with the construction of a website, the implementation of social media, the organisation of awareness raising events and the production of tools including a video. Sharing and networking activities within MedPAN and other organisations in the Arab world are also planned.

Total budget: 19 700€

MedPAN financing: 14 763€

Lebanon – Tyr coast nature reserve

Tyr coast nature reserve

Title of the project: Develop effective communication actions for TCNR

Theme : Strengthening of communication

Objective of the projet:

 

Established in 1998, the Tyr Nature Reserve is an important site for birdlife and sea turtle nesting. It is also an SPAMI since 2012.

But the reserve has been suffering since its creation from a chronic lack of means which harms its effectiveness and its recognition. The financing provided by numerous international projects has made it possible to set up important conservation and communication actions. But these must be strengthened, in a context of high attendance where 500 000 tourists visit the reserve each year.

The objective of this MedPAN small project is to raise the awareness of 3 main targets (students, schoolchildren and women) and to encourage them to become ambassadors of the reserve. Today, 7 volunteers collaborate with the small management team in place and will provide support to implement these communications actions. Conducted in partnership with INNODEV, the project will consist in defining a framework for the engagement of volunteers, train them, involve them in an exchange visit with the Jabal Moussa Nature Reserve (expert in communication); in a second step, tools will be produced to disseminate the messages of the reserve (new logo, awareness material, website, videos, thirdly volunteers will be involved to produce a mural, to put on a show at the visitor centre, or produce handicrafts, in the case of rural women, which will be sold to tourists.

Total budget: 20 000€

MedPAN financing: 15 000€

Lebanon – Environment Protection Committee

Palm Islands nature reserve

Title of the project: Assessment of management priorities and development of a business plan for the Palm Islands Nature Reserve

Theme : Sustainable financing

Objective of the project:

 

The Palm Islands Nature Reserve was established in 1992 and became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2001. Very close to the urban center of Tripoli District, it is a popular destination with an average of 20,000 visitors during the summer opening season.

The reserve is today in a difficult situation insofar as its management plan is obsolete and the available financial means insufficient. This small MedPAN project therefore aims to assess the management priorities of the reserve and to define a sustainable long-term financing strategy based on innovative financing mechanisms. This strategy will be presented in the form of a business plan thanks to the MedPLAN tool developed a few years ago by MedPAN.

Management priorities will be assessed along 3 axes: conservation, recreation, science / environmental education. The business plan will focus on creating a favorable legal and policy environment to improve the financial sustainability of the reserve, develop sources of revenue, and provide the reserve with adequate institutional and individual capacity to support management and financial sustainability.

These studies will be based on the needs of the different stakeholders with surveys and workshops, the results of previous projects as well as the expertise of 2 consultants, one specialized in management plan and the other in finance. The business plan includes working with the local community to identify traditional products that have been abandoned over time and to evaluate the feasibility of their reintroduction.

Total budget: 23 400€

MedPAN financing: 17 000€

Lebanon – Lebanese Committee for Environment and Sustainable Development

Palm Islands nature reserve

Title of the project: Create the basis of a communication system for the Palm Islands Nature Reserve and raise awareness of its biodiversity and importance.

Theme: Strengthening of communication

Objective of the projet:

 

There is little information available on Palm Islands Reserve, and even when the information exists, it is rarely communicated. A situation that does not encourage public support for the management objectives of the reserve.

This small MedPAN project aims to put in place a number of activities and tools to develop the support of the local community for conservation efforts and its participation in the effective management of the reserve and to promote responsible behaviors of visitors and fishermen.

A workshop will be organised with identified stakeholders to raise their awareness to the pressures and possible solutions; a database on the biodiversity of the reserve will be developed with photos taken by a professional and a collation of the studies already carried out by the country’s research centers, as well as 2 digital tools will be produced: an update of the website of the reserve with the database data and a smartphone application that will highlight the biodiversity of the reserve.

Total budget: 20 000€

MedPAN financing: 15 000€