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Managing Our Mangroves for a Better Future
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Managing Our Mangroves for a Better Future
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Beyond Belief

In Vietnam, small coastal communities are planting mangrove trees to protect their land from flooding, but are discovering that the new forests are also valuable resources that create economic opportunities.

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Produced by CARE International.   

To learn more about the effect of mangrove restoration on coastal communities, visit CARE's website.

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Segment 1

TITLE
Da Loc Commune, Vietnam
VU XUAN NGOC [head of project's board, Chairman of Red Cross, Vice Chairman of Da Loc People's Committee]
In 2005, the Damrey Typhoon landed in Da Loc commune, around 10 a.m. on September 17, 2005, with a wind strength at 11 to 12 [over 100 kph]. It broke 3.7 kilometers of sea dyke walls.
PHAM THI TUYEN [Dong Tan Village, Da Loc Commune, Thanh Hoa Province]
We didn't take anything with us. We simply fled for our lives. The typhoon destroyed everything we had in the fields when it arrived.
VU XUAN NGOC
Another part of the dyke, about 1.7 kilometers long, was protected by the mangrove forest. It wasn't broken by the storm and tide combination.
TITLE
Managing Our Mangroves for a Better Future: Community-Based Mangrove Reforestation and Management in Coastal Vietnam
BUI THI DIN [member of project's board, Chairwoman of Yen Loc Village Women's Union]
Generally, people were not aware of the mangrove benefits before. We had some mangrove projects, but couldn't maintain the forest due to human destruction. But since the typhoon, and the project start-up in 2006, people have realized the forest's importance and are actively participating in mangrove protection.
VOICEOVER
CARE takes a community-based approach to the mangrove forest where local people -- including women and youth -- are involved in every aspect of the project, from training to hands-on activities and management responsibilities. They collectively run the project nursery -- selecting and sourcing seeds of recommended varieties for the area's varied local conditions, such as mud or sand sea floors. They also plant and take care of the seedlings. They work together in preparing and planting the mangroves in groups of 50 to 700 people at one time, and have thus far planted on more than 250 hectares of land. Through the hard task of barnacle cleaning and trash removal, local people work to ensure that the plants don't die and can grow up strong with solid roots. The trees have been maintained manually during the project's three years and now cover an area 3 kilometers long and 700 meters wide out to sea with over 2,000 plants on each hectare.[0] This has extended the existing mangrove area and increased their protection for more than 6,000 people threatened by violent storms in the six project villages, plus nearly 2,300 people from neighboring villages.
VU XUAN NGOC
It was local people's initiative to remove the barnacles by hand instead of using chemicals, and they suggested it to the CMB (Community Management Board). It's the most unforgettable memory of my life. The more than 200 hectares of the current forest that we have now is mostly due to barnacle removal.
VOICEOVER
The community also formed a protection team to report and stop activities that harm the mangroves, and everyone helps in awareness raising -- especially the youth-led Green Team.
TITLE
Building resilience through livelihood support
VOICEOVER
People in Da Loc depend mostly on farming for their incomes. Although mangroves can provide security in the near and far future, people also need a variety of livelihood options to build their long-term resilience to the impacts of climate change.
PHAM THI TUYEN
Without being trained and participating in meetings and other activities, I just knew it was simply a forest and had no idea what was in the forest. But now I know how to find clamshells, small crabs, and shrimp to generate extra income for my family from the mangrove forest.
TITLE
Promoting community-led mangrove reforestation and management
VOICEOVER
Through the three-year project, Da Loc community members recognized that they had the greatest stake in overseeing the mangrove forest. They decided to ask the Hau Loc's District People's Committee for the full rights to plan, manage, protect, and sustainably use the mangroves.
BUI THI DIN
If the land is not allocated to the coastal villages, it is impossible to protect the mangrove. They proposed to allocate the forest to three coastal villages for management.
VOICEOVER
In October 2009, they were awarded the decision for the communities to manage and maintain the mangrove forest for five years, following rules and regulations the villages developed themselves.
PHAM THI TUYEN
With climate change, temperatures all over the world are getting higher with more frequent storms, flood, heavy rain, and high water level. We are less worried with the mangrove forest.
TITLE
[end credits]