Description/achievement of initiative
The partnership was initiated 20 years ago through the recognition of Government of the importance of the Samoan cultural village leadership pulega a matai to spearhead the management of the coastal fisheries resources as it is the main source of livelihood for our villages. The objective was to strengthen the people's stewardship on coastal fisheries management through the science and technical support and the strengthening of village traditional taboos tapu through legal recognition such as the development of village by-laws.
It has been achieved through its spread with now 96 villages actively participating as to date. The approach is demand-base for the villages to be included. A village that wishes to be within this program, has to make a unanimous decision as the program will need the support of the chief council and through its implementation the whole village is involve from the chief councils, women's committee, untitled men, women and youths.
Arrangements for Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer
The Fisheries Division provides the technical supports for the strengthening of the management by the villages. Such support includes the ecological assessments of the coastal area to provide up todate status of the coastal resources, workshops and trainings with village members on the management strategies and undertakings by both villages and Government, the support through stock enhancement programs, trainings on alternative livelihood such as eco-tourisms and others. There is also support from the regional fisheries management organization (SPC and FFA) and promotes this initiative for external funding support. There are numerous hands on trainings and workshops for the empowerment of these communities.
Coordination mechanisms/governance structure
The partnership is Governed by the Fisheries Legislation (Fisheries Act 1988) and Village Fono Act, whereby there are provisions in which a village community can developed village fisheries by-laws and village management plans to govern the management of their coastal areas and resources, in particulars their fishing grounds.
Samoa Ministry of Women, 96 Samoan coastal villages