On March 18, the U.S. Peace Corps and international nongovernment organization Rare signed a new five-year memorandum of understanding (MOU) to jointly support sustainable coastal resource and fisheries management.
Representatives from 29 local government units (LGUs) from across the Philippines joined the event, which coincided with the week-long U.S. Peace Corps-led training on community-based coastal resource management for office heads, fisheries and agricultural officers, and environment officers from LGUs that have a coastal resource management program.
“The U.S. Peace Corps is pleased to be renewing its partnership with Rare to build resilient and sustainable coastal communities in the Philippines. Together, we can restore and protect marine habitats and promote sustainable fisheries management,” said U.S. Peace Corps Country Director Jenner Edelman.
“Our continued collaboration with the U.S. Peace Corps will amplify how sustainable fishing behaviors actually improve fish stock productivity, and enable us to continue co-designing and sharing innovative, practical solutions with LGU partners to protect the country’s marine environment,” added Rare Philippines Senior Director Lito Mancao.
While organized by the U.S. Peace Corps, last week’s community-based coastal resource management training for LGU partners was funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). It is the first of a series of USAID-supported capacity development workshops planned for this year that will help local partners protect biodiversity in the Philippines.
The U.S. Peace Corps is conducting a second training on zero-waste programming for youth councils (Sangguniang Kabataan) and their LGU counterparts this week, from March 21 to 25 in Bohol.
Due to the ongoing pandemic, U.S. Peace Corps staff and Rare, rather than American volunteers, are providing technical assistance to LGUs and other partners.
The U.S. Peace Corps is the U.S. government’s premier volunteer organization and has supported Filipino communities across the country for more than 60 years.
Over 9,300 American volunteers have served as co-teachers, youth development facilitators, or in other roles requested by host communities over the decades. To date, approximately 300 Peace Corps volunteers have supported improved coastal resource management in the Philippines.