After these three exciting days, we hit the road back up to Maintirano, determined and confident, with new friends from all over this Big Island, as well as Comoros and our colleagues in London, and with a profound shared feeling that binds us all to our vision: to rebuild tropical fisheries with the coastal communities that depend on them.
As the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP) in Paris draws closer, the term resilience appears with increasing frequency in the media. We frequently hear about “socio-ecological resilience”, “climate-resilient development” and “resilience programming”, but what do these terms mean, and what can we learn from them?
“Miarakara zaho (I take care of things). I can afford to buy clothes and food now,” she says, while kneeling next to her thatched home, just steps from the sand’s damp high tide mark on Nosy Tsolike’s beach. From her home, she can see her seaweed buoys, recycled Coca-Cola and Eau Vive (Madagascar’s ubiquitous bottled water brand) dancing in the swell.
As he talks, Soanatao draws shapes in the bleached Nosy Tsolike sand with a piece of splintered wood he found in the same spot. He doodles, like one does on a piece of scrap paper while chatting to a friend on the phone.
The sun is at high noon just a few days after winter solstice in Lamboara. Marie-Louise and five of her fellow seaweed farmers sit in ankle-deep water tending to cords of seaweed. The women laugh, sing and dance while working, and ever so often the word lomotse is spoken, the word for ‘seaweed’ in Malagasy.