In Palawan, poverty is ubiquitous and unsustainable coastal and land practices are rampant (cyanide fishing, illegal logging) resulting in rapid degradation of unique biodiversity. The Ecotour guides from Busuanga know that their livelihoods depend on protecting the environment instead of thoughtlessly taking away from it. They plan to use citizen media to promote their island as ecotourism hotspot and garner support for conservation action.
What locality or neighborhood will your project focus on?
Describe the specific community with whom you will be working.
The recently-trained Ecotour guides are 18-35 year-old, high school graduates, with a focus on under-represented and disadvantaged groups such as women and disabled. Electricity and water supplies are erratic, and 3G mobile signals are the only means of internet access. They are enthusiastic and keen to show their natural wonders to tourists, but currently lack the skills to take advantage of the internet to reach a wider, international audience.
What kinds of news, stories and other content will be created?
The Ecotour guides will promote Busuanga as an ecotourism hotspot focussing on backpackers and nature enthusiasts. Ecotour guides will be trained in
photography skills, video production and blog development and management. The blog will describe unique species and habitats (sea cows, black cockatoos) and also act as a medium for online advocacy to increase political and financial support for nature conservation and poverty alleviation.
What technologies and digital tools do you plan to use in the trainings?
Describe the connections that you or your organization have already established that will contribute to the success of the project.
C3 Philippines has worked in Busuanga since 2011, and has trained over 50
Ecotour guides in collaboration with local government. We have a strong team of experts in ecotourism, nature conservation and sustainable development who will ensure that the project is a resounding success. Our wider network includes Filipino graphic designers, social media experts and film production companies who are willing to contribute at minimal cost.
How many participants do you think will be involved in your project?
We plan to train at least 50 Ecotour guides in preparation for the
influx of summer tourists in May. We have an excellent working relationship with them and they are very keen to develop further activities. The guides have formed three independently-registered cooperatives that will be responsible for all materials funded by the project (cameras, dongles and laptops), ensuring that the blogs will continue well beyond the duration of the project.
Besides the microgrant funding, what other resources and support are you seeking for your project to ensure its success?
Rising Voices can help support the project by spreading the news and issues involved to the international community. The environmental and socio-economic concerns are particularly pressing as several endangered species and critical habitats coexist with people that are forced to survive on less than 2 US$ a day, resulting in completely unsustainable exploitation of nature.
Community Centred Conservation (C3) / C3 Philippines Inc
Link to Existing Project
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