The ANZ Fiji Excellence in Tourism Awards is an opportunity to recognise excellence in Fiji’s tourism. This year the Vatu-i-Ra Conservation Park was nominated under the category of Environmental Sustainability and was awarded bronze. It was a moment of great pride, especially given the changes of the last 2-3 years.
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The Vatu-i-Ra Conservation Park has a Management Plan that was launched in 2017 and sets out the vision and strategies for sustainably managing Vatu Island, the surrounding customary fishing grounds known locally as i qoliqoli Cokovata Nakorotubu, and adjacent deeper waters. The Park was set up through a traditional tabu through a partnership between local communities and …
To implement the management plan that prohibits fishing in no-take zones, or limits certain activities such as accessing the island without consent of the landowning community, the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and the Vatu-i-Ra Conservation Park Board of Trustees have supported fish warden training and handed over a patrol boat to the Management Committee that will coordinate and implement the monitoring and surveillance of the Conservation Park.
The very people most affected by these practices may not find them fair. This study finds that managers must consider local views on fund distribution to craft more successful and inclusive protected areas.
The Trust has been awarded a Boat Donation from WCS through a grant from the Blue Action Fund (and a small contribution through the Trust) is in the process of buying a boat to enable the Management Committee to conduct patrols in the Park.
In 2020 no education grants were given out (from money collected in 2019). However, rather than have second year without education grants we issued 15 education grants (amounting to FJ$9600) between February and March 2021 to support largely tertiary level students from Nakorotubu District.
IUCN Oceania would like to congratulate Vatu-i-Ra Conservation Trust on receiving a BIOPAMA Rapid Response Grant, this will provide much needed assistance for improving management and supporting local communities.
We received the sad news of Bu Jo’s passing on Friday, 3rd of April 2020
The recipients of the 2019 Tertiary Education Grants met to receive there grants and network at WCS Office in Suva.