In Phang Nga, Thailand, GVI Charitable Programs focus on protecting the marine and coastal area of a small fishing village called Ban Nam Khem. We collaborate with our partners to protect endangered sea turtle populations, restore habitats, catalog species, and carry out valuable scientific research. Our project also focuses on educating the community on the importance of conservation, offering training, and sustainable tourism workshops.
Increase awareness, knowledge, and impact within the local and wider community on environmental issues and facilitate change towards sustainability.
– To increase the sea turtle populations through head start programs, and provide captive turtles with suitable enrichment through research and program implementation.
– Provide environmental and conservation education and training.
– Assist and develop local coastal conservation efforts by providing practical support to collaborative partnerships.
Ban Nam Khem is a small fishing village that was devastated by the 2004 Tsunami. There is currently a lot of development happening in and around the village, this will bring change and opportunity to all aspects of the community and the local biodiversity. The sustainable development goals are 2 fold, across 2 key focus areas, education (for children and adults), and marine and coastal protection.
1. Individuals and cohorts of community members and visitors (tourists) will benefit from direct lessons and workshops aimed at helping the community increase their knowledge and skills on local and global environmental and conservation issues, increasing their opportunities, and protecting theirs and future generations.
2. Working with a number of collaborative partners assisting and developing local conservation projects, including Endangered Sea Turtle husbandry, habitat restoration, coral monitoring, data collection, working to protect and preserve endangered wildlife and ecosystems.
The project is planned over a 10 year period.
The sustainability methods used will be a combination of phasing down, phasing over, and transitioning over.
– Education is key to conservation, understanding the key threats allows people to be able to make a choice.
– Currently running conservation after school club at one of our local partner schools, this will be increased to both partner schools. A pilot scheme will be launched at the two new hotels.
– Sustainable tourism workshops and information stations in the community and the local tourist town.
– Training in the tourist industry to be able to offer responsible and environmentally friendly options and tours.
Marine and coastal protection
– Working in collaboration with our partners, providing sea turtle husbandry and research at the head start program.
– Providing training for staff and visitors, increasing the number of the Endangered Green Sea Turtle.
– Provide data to a number of different science partners, providing valuable data for ongoing research projects around the world.
– Habitat restoration, projects to directly impact local and regional ecosystems.
– Coral surveying to provide data of local reefs, which is needed to track the health and condition of the coral and environment.
– Quantify and catalog terrestrial and marine animal species’ populations to allow scientific studies.
Once completed the project will be handed over to the collaborative project partners and community leads, who in turn will assess strengths and needs within the local area. This may transition over to subject project areas, potentially within new or additional collaborative project partners. It may also transition over to a new community and area, or a combination of the above.
Once phased over, the collaborating partners will continue working together and employ the transition strategy provided by GVI Charitable Programs, which will be employed to allow continued contact and ongoing advice/support as required. The original project will be evaluated by GVI Charitable Programs after 6 months, and 1, 2, and 3 years after phasing over is complete. This will be done via inspection of data sets, interviews with stakeholders, and collaborative partner meetings.
Phase 1 – Establish
Years 1 to 3
Establish and build collaborative partner relationships, identify and initiate initial projects.
– Understand the needs of partners, stakeholders, and the community.
– Set clear guidelines and objectives.
– Create a framework.
– Define and assign skills and resources required.
– Acquire a funding plan.
– Implement, assess, evaluate, and refine initial projects.
Phase 2 – Conducting direct capacity building initiatives
– Project initiatives will be conducted inline with the goals and objectives set, with continuous assessment, refining as and when necessary.
– Evaluation and measurement of success. Impact recorded and shared with stakeholders, and organizing and collaborating partners.
– Measurement of the results of the projects will be recorded to ensure the long-term value of the project initiatives, which can be clearly communicated locally.
– Plan for phasing over complete, including achieving any funding required.
Years 4 and 5
– Continue with the after school conservation club – quarterly tests to check on learning.
– Launch a monthly information stand at the local pier on various local conservation issues. Study and evaluate the effectiveness and impact.
– Continue biodiversity data collection for birds, butterflies, and snakes, submitting the data to citizen science partners.
– Continue providing sea turtle husbandry, collecting data to advise partners of any trends present with informed solutions.
– Start weekly community beach cleans.
– Increase after school conservation club to both local partner schools, increase the frequency of school summer camps with a conservation focus.
– Ignite partnership with new hotels to start a weekly conservation kids club and information board for tourists.
– Expand location and frequency of information stands to local tourist areas, local and global conservation issues.
– Propose a training program for the staff at the Sea Turtle Conservation Centre.
– Use data and information for recommendations on improvements to assist with increased mortality rates of Green Sea Turtles.
– Start to mentor community members who attend the beach cleans on waste management and the importance of Refuse, Reduce, Re-Use, Recycle to life above and below water conservation.
– Analyse data collection for biodiversity surveys, producing a paper on the wildlife recorded that is currently on the IUCN Red List.
Years 7 and 8
– Continuation of after-school activities, identifying a group of candidates made up of ex-students and community members to train in preparation of handover.
– Establish a regular kids club, with workshops for the adults, train the hotel staff on sessions. Provide them with an operating manual for sustainability.
– Recruit a local staff member to engage with the community to establish interest in training on survey techniques, data collection, and analysis.
– Provide the trainer program at the head start program.
– Establish relationships at various venues to hold workshops and education nights in the local tourist area, hosted in partnership with community and partners. Attract 2 markets, one for tour and dive operators and the second for tourists on responsible tourism.
Phase 3 – Phasing Down and Phasing Over
Years 9 and 10
– Work continues in all areas, constantly evaluating impact.
– Success will be measured by ex-students and community members running the after-school clubs and summer camps.
– Beach cleans will be organized and led by the community.
– Local groups will be established to continue with the surveys, inputting the data collected to the various citizen science partners.
– The Sea Turtle Conservation Centre will be training their own staff on the importance of the center and the impact it has on the endangered species. The staff will be confident to talk to the tourists about the turtles and the threats.
– Data and information leads to decreased mortality rates in Green Sea Turtles.
– Local community and dive partners will be trained and take over coral monitoring and reporting. Established introduction to partners, for future training and updates.
– Ongoing support and training available from the network and organizing partner.
– Discuss a transition strategy with the collaborative partners and if relevant create a transition plan prior to the end of the project.
– Ensure the ongoing assessment and support plan is clear to all partners prior to the end of the project.
Buy educational materials for conservation classes for local students.
Buy 5 information packs for a local shark awareness campaign.
Fund a marine ecology workshop for local fishermen & tour operators.
Buy a jet washer to help keep our baby turtles clean from dangerous fungal infections.
Fund a researcher for 1 month.
Project Target: 5,000 USD
Raised so far: 3,295 USD
Funds still needed: 1,705 USD
Through all programs, we work closely with partners and community members to increase educational opportunities, raise awareness on critical global issues, and collaborate on making steps towards improving the issues.
Collaborate with a community in Dawasamu, focusing on gender equality initiatives, global public health, and early childhood development.
Collaborate with local organizations in Phang Nga on sustainable community development projects, focusing on teaching and health education.
Support for the conservation of of a biodiversity hotspot including tropical rainforest and a globally important sea turtle nesting area.