Seychelles is deeply committed to the conservation of the ocean and its marine life. This commitment is shown by the establishment of 6 marine national parks and the race to increase protection of the country’s marine areas from 1% to 30%. While this commitment places Seychelles high on the global conservation scorecard, it is equally important to ensure that enough resources and capacity exist to manage the marine parks. In fact, the World Conservation Union (IUCN) has emphasized that protected area management is a global challenge.

According to the CEO of SNPA, Mr. Flavien Joubert, ‘any strategy to maintain Seychelles marine parks must systematically address staff capacity issues and all aspects of management to ensure that SNPA or its partners deliver on the target set for the protected areas” .  Toward this end SNPA has embarked on an ambitious programme to rapidly build institutional capacity for better marine parks management.

The workshop was delivered by experts from Kenya, the United States of America and the Seychelles, with regional experience in strategic marine park management and covered setting goals and objectives, marine monitoring protocols, socio-economic monitoring, and planning and assessing impact of conservation actions. At the end of the workshop, participants from each agency planned steps to be taken over the next year to improve marine management at all marine parks.  With the resulting strategic partnerships, professionalism, passion and a shared vision as drivers of the new adaptive management strategy, SNPA aims to be a regional model in effective marine park management.

The workshop was made possible through financial support from the US based Pew Charitable Trust, and technical collaboration with Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association -WIOMSA