The spectacular Maputo National Park in southern Mozambique is one of the most biologically diverse and endangered ecoregions on Earth. On land, it is home to fresh lakes, swamp forests, and grassland plains; on the coast, dune systems, mangrove forests, and pristine beaches; and that’s all before going below the surface, in the warm Indian Ocean, washing over healthy seagrass beds and a kaleidoscope of coral reefs. Peace Parks Foundation has been supporting the development and management of this exquisite park for over a decade. With major climate and ocean shifts, now is a pivotal moment to be adaptive to environmental change. To strengthen resilience and reduce vulnerability to climate change, Peace Parks is proactively enhancing the ability of ecosystems and communities to best respond to this flux.
A robust holistic approach to conserving the greater Maputo Environmental Protection Area relies on working with and supporting local communities that most intimately rely on healthy ecosystems for their prosperity. With funding support from the Blue Action Fund and working closely with expert partners, such as ADRA Mozambique, Peace Parks is supporting an ecosystem-based approach programme to better equip these communities to adapt to the impacts of climate change and thrive.
This ambitious programme covers an area of 4,200 km2 and works with 23 communities, including 18,620 direct beneficiaries, of whom almost half are women. In this video, we catch up with one of the Field Farmer Schools in Zitundo at Ponta do Ouro, where female farmers are acquiring and sharing valuable conservation agriculture skills, techniques, and knowledge.
“Our dream for these women is to achieve two goals,” says Anifa Ismael from ADRA. “The first is to achieve food security and also enable them to become entrepreneurs, connect them to markets, and then show them that with agriculture, it is possible to survive.”
By working alongside expert partners in support of Mozambique’s National Association for Conservation Areas, Peace Parks is making waves in addressing food insecurity and helping to generate diverse incomes with longevity for local communities around Maputo National Park. This vital programme not only supports the sustainable use of ecosystems and helps communities be more resilient to climate change, but also fosters relationships and trust between people and the park.