By: Ms Piyapat Nakornchai, GNF Project Manager, Mangrove Action Project
Seven staff from China Mangrove Conservation Network (CMCN) and one representative from Shenzhen Spring Environmental Protection Volunteer Association (SENGO) visited Thailand 16th-25th August 2014 for a field study trip to learn about mangrove and coastal conservation efforts in Thailand. During this 10 days trip, the team, led by the founding director – Dr. Liu Yi, visited numbers of places in Thailand, including MAP-Asia Office and EMR sites in Trang Province, Leeled Community-based Tourism in Surat Thani Province, Kao Sam Roi Yod National Park in Prachuab Khirikan Province, the Sirindhorn International Environmental Park (SIEP) in Petchaburi Province, Amphawa District in Samut Songkram Province, IUCN Asia Regional Office (IUCN ARO) and UNEP Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific (UNEP/ROAP) in Bangkok, as well as Sea Turtle Conservation Center Royal Thai Navy in Chonburi Province.
The members visited MAP – Asia office in Trang in the morning of 17th August to exchange their experiences about mangrove with MAP – Asia team, and to understand about the different aspects of MAP’s work, as well as threats to mangrove in Thailand. The CMCN group was welcomed by the MAP Asia Coordinator, Jim Enright who led the group in a lively and interesting exchange. In the afternoon, MAP staff Ms Piyapat Nakornchai, Global Nature Fund (GNF) Project Manager, took the group to Sikao District to explore a mangrove nursery and the 3 Community-based Ecological Mangrove Restoration (CBEMR) sites in the area. The CBEMR project is under the support of the Global Nature Fund, Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Foundation Ursula Merz and Synchronicity Earth. The team had great fun identifying various species of mangrove found in the area with many new ones present.
|MAP-Asia coordinator, Jim Enright, with the CMCN group|
|Klong Khao Daeng Boat Tour|
On 22nd August the CMCN group travelled to Bangkok to visit the IUCN Asia Regional Office (IUCN ARO), as well as UNEP Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific (UNEP/ROAP). At the IUCN ARO, the group was welcomed by Dr. Scott Perkin – Head of Natural Resources Group, IUCN Asia and Dr. Robert Mather - Head, Southeast Asia Group, IUCN Asia. Then, they had a chance to learn about Mangrove for the Future (MFF) works from Mr. Raquib Amin – Project Manager of MFF Programme, and later Dr. Chamniern Vorratnchaiphan – Country Representative IUCN Thailand shared the stories of the works in Thailand. Afterward, Dr. Liu Yi shared the mangrove conservation work of CMCN to the IUCN Asia team. During this presentation by Dr. Yi, Ms. Aban Marker Kabraji – IUCN Asia Regional Director joined the IUCN team and showed interest in collaborating with the CMCN. This visit was made possible thanks to the coordination of Dr. Saroj Srisai – Programme Coordinator, Natural Resources Group, Asia.
|Mangrove Restoration at SIEP|
The next day, the group departed Bangkok in the morning for Sattahip near Pattaya, where the Sea Turtle Conservation Center Royal Thai Navy locates. They learned about the sea turtle situation in Thailand, and expressed that products made from parts of sea turtles and other wild animals should not be bought by tourists. The following day, some of the crew enjoyed temples in Bangkok, whereas others went to other attractions.
As an organizer of the trip, MAP hopes the team have gained valuable experiences and had a great time in Thailand. We also support the energetic team to keep up their great mangrove conservation work in China.
Note: MAP has been networking and sharing information with CMCN for over 10 years now and in 2013, Jim Enright of MAP-Asia Coordinator was invited as a guest speaker to a mangrove workshop organized by CMCN in Xiamen, Fujian. In 2012, Martin Keeley, MAP’s Education Director, introduced MAP's Marvelous Mangrove education curriculum to schools in Xiamen through CMCN facilitation coordination.