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Coastal resources management

Effective community–based mangrove management as a response to climate change

07. 02. 2014 Coastal resources management

On 12th September, 2013, a conference called “Effective community–based mangrove management as a response to climate change” held in Hanoi. The conference was organized within the framework of a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation, coordination, and information sharing between the Hydrometeorology and Climate Change Department (Department of Natural Resources and Environment), Climate Change Working Group of Non-Governmental Organizations (CCWG), and Network of Non-Governmental Organizations Vietnam and Climate Change (VNGO & CC), which was signed on 18th November, 2011.

The conference’s objective was to raise general awareness of the current situation, including climate change in Vietnam, as well as values and ecosystem services related to mangroves. By doing so, the conference aimed to enhance the role of communities and related stakeholders in generating climate changes adaptations and mangrove management frameworks.

There were more than 100 representatives from relevant ministries, departments, and organizations, such as Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, representatives of donor agencies such as the International Organization of German cooperation (GIZ), Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Belgian Development Agency (BTC), the Norwegian Embassy, and representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Additionally, the Forest Protection Department representatives from Nam Dinh, Thai Binh, Hai Phong, Thanh Hoa, Kien Giang and Soc Trang also actively participated.

At the conference, information about Vietnam’s development plan for mangroves, Forestland Allocation  Program (the policy and legal framework), was announced through speeches by representatives of the Forest Inventory and Planning Institute and MARD.  The representative of CARE International in Vietnam shared experiences in mobilizing community involvement to effectively manage mangrove systems.

MCD representatives presented a mangrove management model and sustainable livelihoods support in coastal areas. The conference also allowed local participants from Thanh Hoa, Nam Dinh and Kien Giang to share challenges of mangrove management at the community level and the role of NGOs’ support.

The following open-dialogue between government agencies, NGOs, sponsors, and local representatives showed an overall picture of the programs and policies related to mangrove forests, as well as obstacles to overcome.

All parties agreed that enhancing the community’s role plays an important part in managing mangrove forests effectively. Field trips on the second conference day to Hau Loc district – Thanh Hoa province, helped participants to better understand the benefits of practical and effective community-based management of mangroves.


Mr. Pham Van Tan, Vice President of Hydrometeorology and Climate Change Department, delivered a speech: “To respond effectively and comprehensively to the impact of climate changes, individual efforts of state agencies alone is not enough. The contributions and support of NGOs, international organizations, and all social classes is extremely important. This conference is an opportunity to help us understand the role of the community and stakeholders in climate change responses and the effective management of mangroves, simultaneously generating sustainable livelihoods for people “.

On behalf of Country Director CARE Vietnam, Climate Change Working Group, Ms. Claudia Futterknecht said: “The core success of non-governmental organizations is to mobilize the participation of stakeholders, especially for local restoration and management of mangroves. Communities need to understand that the role of mangroves is not only to provide economic benefits but also to be an effective tool to help mitigate the risk of natural disasters, climate change adaptation, and sustainable livelihoods.”



Ms. Ho Thi Yen Thu, MCD Vice President and VNGO&CC network representative, said: “NGOs really want experiences  to be shared and problems to be solved. In order to develop both the efficiency and scale of community–based mangrove management, we should promote cooperation towards peaceful and sustainable life for communities.”

The conference was sponsored by the “Southern Voice” program through CARE Vietnam, the Sweden Embassy, and MCD Vietnam.

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