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Environment and development
in coastal regions and in small islands
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Field Project Assessment
Sustainable livelihoods for artisanal fishers through stakeholder co-management in the Portland Bight Protected Area, Jamaica

Date of
A visit was conducted to the project site between 9-12 July, 2001. Assessment completed 3rd February 2002.
conducted by

Dr. Gillian Cambers, UNESCO consultant, Dr. Dirk Troost, Chief UNESCO-CSI (not closely associated with the project); Rev. Peter Espeut, Director of Caribbean Coastal Area Management (C-CAM) Foundation and field project leader.     

  1. Field project summary (March 01).

  2. Portland Bight Protected Area Management Plan. May 1999.

  3. UNESCO, 2001.  Wise coastal practices towards sustainable small island living. Results of a workshop on ‘Wise coastal practices for sustainable human development in small island developing states, CSI papers 9.

  4. Global Environment Facility, Project Document for Block B Project Development Funds ‘Coastal Zone Management in Portland Bight, Jamaica’ and Budget and Timelines, January 2001.

  5. UNESCO, 2000. Wise coastal practices for sustainable human development.  Results of an intersectoral workshop and preliminary findings of a follow-up virtual forum, CSI info 10.

  6. C-CAM Pamphlets: ‘The Portland Bight Protected Area’,  ‘The Caribbean Coastal Area Management Foundation’, ‘A Bold Experiment Co-management in the Portland Bight Protected Area’.

  7. ‘The ethical dimensions of coastal zone management: the case of the Portland Bight Protected Area’, prepared by Peter Espeut for the workshop on Furthering Coastal Stewardship, Dominica 4-6 July, 2001.

  8. In social context:  Espeut empowers Jamaican fishermen to manage local resources. MARITUENTAS, Vol 1, No. 2, Autumn-Winter, 1999.

  9. (Several baseline reports on fishing communities, wetlands, fishing resources, flora and fauna were seen at the C-CAM office, but not read in any depth).

Assessment activities:

Meetings with: Ms. Carla Gordon and Ms. Christine Sutherland, National Parks and Protected Areas Division, National Environmental Planning Agency; Mr. Steven Stone, Environmental Specialist, Inter-American Development Bank; Dr. George Warner, Director of the Centre for Marine Sciences, University of the West Indies; Mr. Jones, Fisheries Division, Ministry of Agriculture; Half-Moon Bay Fishermen’s Cooperative Society Ltd. - Mr. Desmond Abrahams, Vice President, Ms. Yvonne, Assistant Secretary Treasurer, the Treasurer and the Secretary, and visit to Pigeon Island; Ms. Pandora Walker, Game Warden, Rocky Point; staff of C-CAM; Mr. Roderick Ebanks, Mr. Sylvanus Walters, Archaeology Division, Jamaica National Heritage Trust; Science and Technology Committee of the Jamaica National Commission for UNESCO, representatives of the National Commission, Education and Communication committees; Dr. Claudia Harvey and Mr. Alwin Bully of the UNESCO Regional Office; Ms. Lawrence, Ms. Dawn Lowe and Mr. Matthew Morrison, Jamaica Sustainable Development Network; Mr. Chris Shaw, Mrs. Marjorie Campbell and Ms. Vivilene Edwards, Urban Development Corporation; C-CAM Board of Directors.

Constraints: Arrangements for the visit had been well organised.  Political unrest in Kingston caused some rescheduling.

Field Project Assessment

The sixteen characteristics, used to define ‘wise practices’, are used here to assess this field project.  A qualitative scale is used as follows:

None  (0): The field project activities to date do not comply with this characteristic and/or the characteristic is not relevant.
Slightly (1-3): The field project activities to date have begun in some preliminary way to satisfy  this characteristic.
Partially (4-6): The field project activities to date have gone some significant way towards fulfilling this characteristic.
Fully (7-9): The field project activities to date have gone the full way to complying with  this characteristic.  

This assessment is based only on the activities undertaken to date, and does not include those planned for the future.

Have the project activities ensured long term benefit?  

Partially (5)

The goals of this project are essentially long term, and while significant progress has been made towards achieving some of the objectives, others will require a longer period of time and more work.  For instance, significant progress has been made in empowering local fishers to manage their own resources through the Fisheries Management Council.  The Portland Bight Protected Area (PBPA) has been formally established and gazetted, however, management authority has not yet been delegated to the Caribbean Coastal Area Management Foundation (C-CAM).  Reversing extreme over-fishing will take a long period of time, although a start has been made with the system of honorary game wardens.  Comprehensive studies of the resources of Portland Bight (mangroves, coral, fisheries, flora and fauna) have been undertaken, and these will provide a baseline for evaluating alternative economic activities in the future.  

Do the project activities provide for capacity building and institutional strengthening?

Fully (7)

The Fisheries Management Council has been in existence for more than five years, members meet regularly every month.  Similarly the Citizens’ Councils (one has been established in the parish of St. Catherine and one in Clarendon) have been meeting regularly for the past two years.  C-CAM provides administrative support for both Councils.  The system of honorary game wardens (user name = csi, password = wise), with the associated training and regular meetings, has also provided for capacity building at the community level.
Are the project activities sustainable? Partially (6)
Activities such as the Fisheries Management Council, the Citizens Council and the honorary game warden system have been in operation for some time and are likely to continue.  C-CAM itself relies heavily on project funds to cover running expenses and the organisation is at present in a somewhat uncertain situation since the management of the PBPA has not yet been officially delegated to them.  A Global Environment Fund (GEF) Block B Project Development grant has been obtained, and provided the management authority for the PBPA is delegated to C-CAM, it is likely that the full GEF funding will be provided.
Have the project activities been transferred?

Slightly (3)

While the potential for transferring some of the activities exists, there has been little transfer to date.  The Fisheries Division have taken the initiative to incorporate the fisheries regulations prepared by the Portland Bight Fishers Council into their national draft regulations.  Beach monitoring training, conducted in May 2001, included participants from several other Jamaican non-governmental organisations (NGO).  From time to time, fishers from other parts of Jamaica (e.g. Discovery Bay, Rio Bueno and Salem) have attended the Fisheries Management Council meetings, and council members have visited the fishers of Negril, Montego Bay and Discovery Bay.  While the field project leader has a preference to wait with transferring lessons learnt until specific goals have been achieved, the other members of the evaluation team felt that considerable benefit could be derived by sharing the lessons already learnt from co-management.  To this end, discussions were held with the Fisheries Division during the visit on the potential for involving other NGOs and fishers cooperatives in the Portland Bight Fisheries Management Council’s meetings on a regular basis.  
Are the project activities interdisciplinary and intersectoral?

Fully (8)

The project activities involve several different disciplines: natural and social sciences, culture, heritage, archaeology, communications and education; several different societal sectors are involved: government, NGO, private sector, academia, fishers, citizens.
Do the project activities incorporate participatory processes?

Fully (7)

Considerable efforts have been made to include all the stakeholder groups.  During the visit it was evident that one significant stakeholder, the Urban Development Corporation, did not consider itself a full partner in the participatory process, although they had been sending official representation to both the Fisheries Management Council and the Citizens’ Council of St. Catherine for several years.
Do the project activities provide for consensus building?

Fully (7)

Every attempt is being made to build consensus at different levels, e.g. at the fishing beaches, the cooperatives, the Fishers Council.  Continual efforts need to be made to fully include all stakeholders, including the Urban Development Corporation, in the consensus building process.
Do the project activities include an effective and efficient communication process?

Partially (6)

This is being achieved through continual dialogue and meetings with the stakeholder groups, newspaper columns and radio shows.  Inevitably, most of the communication has been with the more vocal stakeholders, there is always a significant ‘silent majority.’
Are the project activities culturally respectful?

Fully (8)

The need to value and respect cultural and traditional frameworks, particularly those of the fishers of Portland Bight, is the basis for the project activities.
Do the project activities take into account gender and/or sensitivity issues?

Fully (7)

In view of the fact that the role of women as stakeholders in the Jamaican fishery is not well appreciated, a special effort has been made to include women in the project activities, e.g. female boat-owners are members of the Fisheries Management Council, and several of the honorary game wardens are women.  Other sensitive issues include enforcement and land ownership.  The project activities are taking account of enforcement issues through the system of honorary game wardens, and are attempting to include land ownership issues – although further efforts are required in this area.  
Do the project activities strengthen local identities?

Fully (7)

The project has made progress in improving the self-reliance of local fishers and their ability to begin to manage their own livelihoods.
Do the project activities shape national legal policy?

Fully (7)

The project activities are helping to shape current government policy, e.g. the fisheries regulations prepared by the Portland Bight Fishers Council have been incorporated into draft national fisheries regulations.  Once management responsibility for the PBPA is delegated to C-CAM, the potential exists to shape national policy regarding co-management of protected areas.
Do the project activities encompass the regional dimension?

Partially (4)

Some preliminary work has been done to embody the regional dimension, e.g. there were exchange visits between Jamaican fishers and Haitian fishers in 1998, and further exchanges are planned between Jamaica and San Andrés, Colombia.  C-CAM is a full member of the Caribbean Conservation Association and the Caribbean Marine Protected Area Managers  Network, and participates in the programme of the Caribbean Fisheries Resource Assessment and Management Programme.
Do the project activities provide for human rights?

Slightly (3)

The project activities, by providing assistance in the form of advice to the Halfmoon Bay Fishermen’s Cooperative so that they could gain title to the land area at Halfmoon Bay, have provided for human rights, specifically Article 17.1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  Through the Fisheries Management Council, compensation has been obtained for fishers who had their nets damaged by a petroleum barge which strayed outside the shipping channel, after the fishers themselves were rebuffed at gunpoint by the captain, and they could not get admission to the office of the refinery to make a complaint (Article 17.2 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights).
Have the project activities been documented?

Partially (4)

Some project activities have been well documented, e.g. the Management Plan 1999-2004.  However, many intermediary steps, e.g. the activities of the Fisheries Management Council, and the system of honorary game wardens, have not been fully documented.  There is much to be learnt by others from such activities – both the successes and the failures.  
Have the project activities been evaluated?

None (0) 

This is the first full evaluation of the project.
Article 17 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states:
  1. Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others.

  2. No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.

Revised Future Project Activities 

  1. Full documentation and publication of past activities: this will include publication of the materials prepared in the 1999 and 2001 contracts on fishers’ local knowledge and fishing practices in Portland Bight, as well as the analysis of socio-economic data from coastal communities in Portland Bight. 

  2. Phase 2 of the archaeological survey: this will include excavations on Great and Little Goat Islands.  (It is anticipated that there may be further phases of the archaeological survey in the future). 

  3. Establishment of a Portland Bight community radio station: this will involve support for the license application, equipment and training. 

  4. Establishment of stronger linkages between the Portland Bight project, the UNESCO Office in Jamaica and the Jamaica National Commission for UNESCO: it is very important to keep both the National Commission and the UNESCO regional office fully aware and up to date regarding project activities.  To this end, a presentation to the National Commission and visit to the project site should be arranged as soon as possible. 

  5. Commencement of beach monitoring in Portland Bight: now that the initial training and equipment has been supplied, this should get under way as soon as possible. 

  6. Commencement of CARICOMP monitoring in Portland Bight: as soon as the necessary equipment has been supplied, monitoring of mangroves, sea grasses and coral reefs using standard methodology can be started. 

  7. Facilitate an exchange visit between the fishers of Portland Bight and fishers from San Andrés, Colombia

  8. Ensure that one school from the Portland Bight area is involved as an active partner in the three-year Sandwatch project (a joint activity of the COSALC project and the Associated Schools Project Net-Caribbean Sea Project): in the future, it is planned to establish environmental clubs in the schools in Portland Bight. 
  9. Explore the possibility for establishing a UNESCO chair  on 'Wise Coastal Practices for Sustainable Human Development' at the Sir Arthur Lewis Centre for Social and Economic Studies in Kingston, Jamaica.  

Introduction Activities Publications Search
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