What Have We Been Doing In Abu Dhabi – Summer 2015

July 01, 2015

Project Coordinator, Maya Todorova-Bankova went to Colombo, Sri Lanka in late July, with Project Associate, Mariam Yacout and CMS Dugong MoU Programme Officer, Dr. Donna Kwan with the aim of meeting all of the national project partners: BEAR (Biodiversity Education And Research), Department of Wildlife Conservation, Centre for Research on Indian Ocean Marine Mammals (CRIOMM), IUCN Sri Lanka, National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA), Ocean Resources Conservation Association (ORCA), Sri Lanka Turtle Conservation Project (TCP) and the Sri Lanka Department of Wildlife Conservation.

This meeting marked the official launch of the Sri Lanka national project and the establishment of the Sri Lanka National Facilitating Committee (NFC); key moments in the establishment of all of the country projects. The meeting focused on exploring synergies among partners and highlighted the need to work together with India in regard to dugong and seagrass conservation. To this end, India was officially invited and attended the Inception Workshop which was hosted in Colombo, Sri Lanka as a result of these meetings held in July.

In September, Maya and Dr. Fred Launay (Acting Director General, Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund) visited the project team in Timor-Leste. This was an opportunity to bring all of the country partners together for first time: representatives from the Fisheries Directorate, Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and Biodiversity Directorate, Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Environment, and Biodiversity Directorate in Timor-Leste, GEF Focal Point, CBD Focal Point, Country Director of Conservation International, and the Executive Director of Blue Ventures.

In some cases, this was the first time these organisations/individuals had ever met, and so this meeting was not only helpful but essential for the project ‘kick-off’. Fred and Maya were also honoured to meet with the newly appointed Minister of Commerce, Industry and Environment during their brief visit to the country.

Maya and the rest of the PCT are planning trips to all project countries over the coming year because we like to know what our partners face on the ground. We look forward to visiting you soon!

2015 Field Trip Photo Album: Timor-Leste:

PCT Field Trip: Timor-Leste 2015