Safeguarding the Natural Resources of San Salvador, through Science, Partnership & Community Participation
Presented by Lakeshia Anderson
Successful establishment and management of national parks are dependent upon cooperative relations between local communities and Park managers. Participatory engagement of stakeholders is therefore an essential component of the planning and development of national parks to build consensus, and long-term and trustful relationships.
The Bahamas National Trust (BNT) rebuilt long-term partnerships with the San Salvador Living Jewels Foundation (SSLJ) and the Gerace Research Centre (GRC) on the island of San Salvador. A combination of education and outreach activities were implemented to raise support and awareness for protecting the park values identified through a wealth of scientific assessments, while also planning for visitor use and economic opportunities for local communities on Sal Salvador. Through project funding from the Critical Ecosystems Partnership Fund (CEPF), BNT and its partners engaged the communities and resource users in a participatory approach, resulting in the establishment of the San Salvador National Park System followed by a collaborative management planning process,. The San Salvador National Park System is made up of five (5) new national parks encompassing marine, terrestrial and wetland ecosystems; the five (5) new areas are the Graham’s Harbour Seabird & Iguana National Park, the West Coast Marine Park, the Pigeon Creek & Snow Bay National Park, the Southern Great Lake National Park, and the Green’s Bay National Park.