Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
Ropes of Hope was born from the dreams of a few ocean lovers on a coral restoration course, funded by the Chole Mjini Conservation and Development Company and Thanda Island Private Marine Reserve, in partnership with the Mafia Island Marine Park. Their team is compromised of an international team of biologists, videographers, park rangers, and community members.
The goal is to halt the decline of the coral reefs of the Mafia Island Marine Park, which have been damaged by multiple bleaching events over the years and more recently by unsustainable fishing practices, and to help regenerate this wonder of Nature to its full former splendour.
They're in the process of establishing large scale nurseries to serve as living gene banks, conserving genetic variability, but the plan is to approach the coral reef ecosystem of the park holistically, by including the local communities that live in the park and who depend on the natural resources of the park.
Their efforts will focus on:
- Collecting and propagating as many different species, and genotypes within species, as possible from “corals of opportunity” (found loose, living fragments that would otherwise die) to create a living gene bank. The goal is to build 25 nurseries of different kinds, each housing 4,000 to 5,000 corals.
- Conducting well-controlled and monitored research on methods for cost-effective reef regeneration and how to stimulate natural coral recruitment. Growing corals is now well established, getting new corals to take hold and flourish is the current challenge they face.
- To involve the fishers of the islands within the park in coral propagation and regeneration to raise awareness of the economic importance of the reefs for their futures and help them to diversify their money-making activities and develop alternative protein sources.
Ropes of Hope Video
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