Mangrove rehabilitation and income diversification

Full Solution
Planting mangrove seedlings at Silonay.
Conservation International
The solution addresses the degradation of coastal greenbelts by enabling and empowering people to rehabilitate degraded mangrove areas, and protect and manage remaining mangroves which are important for coastal protection, fisheries, and carbon sequestration. Diversifying incomes and providing capacity building for communities ensures sustainability of mangrove rehabilitation, protection and management initiatives.
Dernière modification 08 Feb 2023
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Challenges addressed
Tropical cyclones / Typhoons
Tsunami/tidal wave
Ecosystem loss
Lack of technical capacity
Lack of public and decision maker’s awareness
The solution aims at rehabilitating degraded mangrove areas into coastal greenbelts to protect coasts and people’s livelihoods from climate change associated threats, such as storm surge, erosion, and typhoons. Complementary income diversification initiatives that may also use mangrove ecosystem services encourage and facilitate community participation in mangrove management initiatives.
Scale of implementation
Ecosystem services
Local actors
Coastal and marine spatial management
Silonay in Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro, Philippines
Southeast Asia
Summary of the process
Based on the vulnerability assessment of the communities (Building block 1), the target area for the project intervention is identified. Project implementation starts with capacity building of the community (Building block 2) and the identification and development of income diversification (Building block 3) to enable the community and its individual members to continuously and actively support and manage mangrove protection and conservation. The conservation framework and agreement (Building blocks 4 and 5) help communities and governmental agencies to include mangrove rehabilitation into climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction plans, to allocate budgets and develop supportive policies, to establish and link to networks, and to jointly formalize an agreement that lays out all details of the partnership and project. Continuous technical and financial support, transparent and good relationships between all partners, including the community, local government and the service provider, are important factors to the success of each building block, and the solution.
Building Blocks
Vulnerability assessment

Suitable sites are identified and prioritized based on the potential of successful mangrove rehabilitation to reduce vulnerability in the face of climate change. In the case of Silonay, mangrove rehabilitation was identified as a solution to storm surge vulnerability.

Enabling factors
  • Existence of remaining mangrove areas;
  • Technical know-how and funding from NGO partners;
  • Community and local government awareness of ecosystem services benefits of mangroves and other marine resources.
Lesson learned

People who benefit from the habitats, species and sites (and the services they provide) should be involved in managing them and making decisions about the project. Vulnerability assessments should be done at both, the municipal and village level. Results of vulnerability assessments should be disseminated to key local and national policy makers and local chief executives and community leaders so they can take action to address key vulnerabilities.

Community trainings and mentoring

Skills and knowledge needs of the target community are identified for mangrove rehabilitation and management, and alternative livelihood development. Trainings and mentoring activities are organized and developed to strengthen the capacities of communities in the required aspects of the project. These include, but are not limited to, organizational and enterprise development, mangrove and financial management. Furthermore, the capacity building activities are opportunities to communicate more clearly the project and raise awareness of target community.

Enabling factors
  • A strong community organization that is willing to engage in the project;
  • Technical support for capacity building from various organizations and institutions.
  • Role of women in the community.
Lesson learned

It is important that the community has buy-in and ownership of the project. Understanding the project’s concept and agreement with its mechanisms is a key to success. To ensure smooth project planning and implementation, a clear leveling off of expectations between communities, local government and service providers, such as Conservation International, with regards to details and mechanisms should be established from the beginning. Women function as key agents of change in community natural resource management, innovation, fishing and care giving. Thus, women’s key role for climate change and ecosystem based adaptation should be carefully considered. In case of Solonay, most of the active participants are women.

Income diversification

First, communities identify prospective livelihood options. Discussion and agreement then takes place among the community on priorities that are sustainable and therefore correspond best to the community’s management capacities. Training is provided to build additional capacity for the identified livelihoods to ensure sustainability, and resources are provided to operationalize alternative livelihood options. Continuous mentoring helps ensure success.

Enabling factors
  • Active support, buy-in and commitment from the community.
  • Technical support to ensure funding for development of income alternatives.
  • Technical support for capacity building.
Lesson learned

Ecosystem-based approaches should inherently incorporate alternative sustainable livelihood packages that highlight the value of conserving ecosystems. Benefits should respond to immediate livelihood needs to encourage active community engagement. To be effective, community capacity building should be continuous and regularly updated to provide access, knowledge and skills of relevant innovations and new technologies. The nomination of a champion, or champions, helps promote the initiative and encourages more community members and organisations to engage.

Conservation framework

Communities and local governments receive support to draw up a conservation framework that prepares the ground for mangrove rehabilitation. This framework takes into account important aspects like climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction and integrates them into local plans, budgets and policies.

Enabling factors
  • Strong engagement and good relationships with local government (district and municipal/city level)
  • Sufficient funds to support and implement the project
Lesson learned


Conservation agreement

Networking and linking with other organisations has proven to be effective in ensuring sustainability and continuous support. All partners involved in conservation and rehabilitation activities jointly develop a conservation agreement that lays out the cooperation details.

Enabling factors


Lesson learned


The solution helped to protect 300 ha, and to rehabilitate and enrich 150 ha of degraded or sparsely populated mangroves in the target community area, increasing coastal protection and contributing to carbon sequestration and storage. The community actively and continuously supports mangrove rehabilitation, protection and management, which were assisted through the implementation of 7 supplementary livelihoods for active community members. The success of the community initiative gained additional support from other organisations and agencies.
The local organization, Samahan ng Nagkakaisang Pamayanan ng Silonay.
The coastal village, or barangay, of Silonay in Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro has been constantly threatened by storm surges due to its geographic location. Cognizant of this threat, Conservation International Philippines, in collaboration with the local governments of Calapan City and the province of Oriental Mindoro, established the Silonay Mangrove Conservation and Eco-tourism Park, an ecosystem-based adaptation project, which involves mangrove restoration and enrichment to protect village dwellers from climate change-related impacts such as storm surges, rise in sea level and coastal erosion. Additionally, the project aims to empower people in Silonay to actively participate in protection and management of the mangrove park through sustainable livelihoods generated by eco-tourism activities. The Samahang Nagkakaisang Pamayanan ng Silonay (SNPS), a community-based organization, was enabled with the help of the barangay council to manage and protect the mangrove areas. They have completed the rehabilitation and enrichment of a 25-hectare area in the Silonay Mangrove Marine Protected Area. As part of the ecotourism package in Silonay, a 400-meter mangrove boardwalk was also constructed to allow visitors to tour the mangrove area for a fee. Visitors to the mangrove park can engage in close-to-nature activities, such as bird watching, kayak and paddle-boat tours operated by the SNPS. The group is also engaged in the production of snack items such as squash chips and souvenir items such T-shirts and key chains. Visitors are also encouraged to engage in mangrove planting to restore and enrich the wetland ecosystem of Silonay.
Connexion avec les contributeurs
Other contributors
Enrique Nunez Jr.
Conservation International
Jocel Pangilinan
Conservation International