People and the Sea

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Short description

People and the Sea has been working with the community of Malapascua (2 sqkmn island, 8,000 permanent resident, 70,000 t ...


People and the Sea has been working with the community of Malapascua (2 sqkmn island, 8,000 permanent resident, 70,000 tourists/year) for the past five years. Our objective is to empower the local community to protect its marine resources whilst improving livelihoods. We run 5 main programs: sustainable fishing, solid waste management, environmental education, enterprise development and marine resources monitoring.

We have gained the trust of the community, we collaborate closely with the local government and great progress was being made before this crisis. The island is now under quarantine, with zero economic activity and limited travel to the mainland. There is no doctor or nurse. Households are told to stay home but with no income, and limited food supplies, they have to travel to the mainland to buy rice, and have turned back to intensive destructive fishing.

Since May 2018, we have developed a robust process to collect waste from households. This waste is then sent to the mainland to be properly disposed of. Our team maintains lists of houses visited, has good knowledge of community members and leaders. In 2019 we collected over 130 tons of waste and converted 200 families to regular composting. This demonstrates the trust we have from the community, our linkages to the government and our capacity at running this program with limited resources and difficult logistics.

To fight coronavirus we need to reverse this process to be able to bring food and basic supplies to the island. This would reduce the need for people to go to the mainland, and therefore reduce interactions that propagate Covid19. Our team will organise for the purchase, transport and distribution of these supplies while informing the community on proper habits to fight the virus and lockdown rules. We want to bring 4 boats of food and supplies each month until the crisis ends and people can get back to work.

We are on a countdown. This community will be very badly hit if/when the coronavirus reaches the island. No medical personnel, crowded living conditions, no food stocks, poor hygiene, reduction of supplies are all factors for a sanitary and economic disaster. We’ve had to put most of our programs on hold, but we’ve managed to maintain a core team on site, and we feel our help could be quite decisive in slowing down coronavirus. We have the perfect team to make this happen, but no funding. We’re therefore impatiently looking forward to your reply.

Target country


Project type

  • Alleviation

Support needed

  • Business Strategy
  • Technical expertise

What we need help with

Raising capital: since 2015 we were fully self-funded through volunteer tourism. But this source of income has stopped with coronavirus, which not only stopped all our community and science programs but also prevents us from supporting the community in this unprecedented crisis. We have the team, field knowledge and experience to be able to really make a difference. Communication is key in accessing this funding. We do great things, but we are not very good at talking about it. Social medias, newsletters, videos, etc... we try but we're slow. And we could do so much more with the right exposure.

Best way to get in touch

Via website or email

Project status

  • In Progress