Reefs for People: Planning for Reef and Fisheries Conservation in Belize

By May 24, 2010Uncategorized

Over the past two months, CAVU’s outstanding international team of cameramen, editors and producers has been working diligently on an educational outreach film on reef and fisheries conservation in Belize. The goal? To raise awareness amongst the Belizean people of the threats facing the country’s unique barrier reef system, the second longest in the world, and to create a dialogue that will facilitate informed, educated decisions about the reef, and the country’s future.

The film, when complete, will be screened for national legislators, national and international NGOs and high-ranking government officials in Belize City and Belmopan, then played on national television and community halls in fishermen’s communities up and down the coast, to ensure that all have the opportunity to view and benefit from it.

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CAVU, together with Belizean partners Healthy Reefs Initiative and Association for Protected Areas Management Organizations (APAMO), chose to focus on the urgent need for a coastal zone management plan in Belize. The plan, if approved, will help regulate and organize development in critical buffer zones and coastal areas that front the reef and mangrove cayes – a key step in the long term sustainability of Belize’s fisheries and tourism based economy.

In addition to the main, full length film, CAVU is also working on a series of shorter 5-10 minute films which will highlight specific issues relating to reef conservation, including mangrove protection, marine protected areas and enforcement, among others.

Over a three-week film period in February and March, CAVU heard from hundreds of Belizeans in fishing communities up and down the coast. Film sites included Ambergris Caye, Placencia, the Pelican Cayes, Punta Gorda, Hopkins and Belize City. The final product is expected some time this summer or early fall! Stay tuned.

Special thanks to the Oak Foundation and Conservation International for funding and institutional support!

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