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The Coca‑Cola Foundation Awards Grant to Blue Ventures to Help Protect Madagascar's Mangroves

Antananarivo, Madagascar, 3rd July 2024 – The Coca‑Cola Foundation (TCCF) announces a $497,560 grant to NGO Blue Ventures. This grant aims to support mangrove communities through nature-based, coastal management efforts.

Madagascar's mangroves play a critical role in the island's coastal health and economy. These ecosystems act as natural barriers, protecting against storm surges, rising sea levels, and erosion. They also filter water and provide essential habitat for fish and other marine life.

The project focuses on Madagascar's two largest mangrove forests in Mahajamba and Tsimipaika Bays. This enhanced protection of the coastline is also expected to improve the livelihoods of vulnerable coastal communities.

“We believe in advanced water resource management solutions and programs to enable vulnerable communities to effectively prepare for, recover from, and adapt to the impacts of climate change,” stated Carlos Pagoaga, President of The Coca‑Cola Foundation. “By supporting this project, we aim to enable Blue Ventures to put community-led nature-based solutions into practice to protect the mangroves which are essential for the health of our planet and the well-being of coastal communities,” he added.

Working directly with local communities, the initiative aims to support village management groups (VOIs) to effectively govern their mangrove forests and fisheries. This comprehensive approach also includes restoring degraded mangrove habitats through replanting efforts.

"Blue Ventures is thrilled to receive this grant from The Coca‑Cola Foundation," said Gildas Andriamalala, Country Director at Blue Ventures. "Madagascar's mangroves are vital ecosystems, and this project will empower local communities to protect them. By working together, we can improve management of these mangroves, enhance coastal protection, and ensure the long-term sustainability of these vital ecosystems and the communities that depend on them."

About The Coca‑Cola Foundation

The Coca‑Cola Foundation’s mission is to make a difference in communities around the world where The Coca‑Cola Company operates and where our employees live and work. We support transformative ideas and institutions that address complex global challenges and that leave a measurable and lasting impact. Our giving is focused on sustainable access to safe water, climate resilience and disaster risk preparedness and response, circular economy, economic empowerment, and causes impacting our hometown community. Since its inception in 1984, The Coca‑Cola Foundation has awarded grants of over $1.5 billion in service of its mandate to strengthen communities across the world. 

About Blue Ventures

Blue Ventures is a pioneering marine conservation organisation that supports coastal communities to rebuild fisheries and restore ocean life. Our work began two decades ago in Madagascar’s remote coastal communities and is growing globally. Today, we’re working with traditional fishers and community organisations in 15 countries, protecting over 20,800km² of ocean habitat, and positively impacting the lives of over 880,000 people.

The ocean emergency

Our oceans and the coastal communities that depend on them are facing a deepening environmental and humanitarian emergency on a global scale. Overfishing, habitat destruction, and climate breakdown are decimating biodiverse marine ecosystems and threatening the livelihoods of millions who depend on them. For vulnerable tropical communities, the impacts are immediate and severe, exacerbating poverty, food insecurity, and ecological degradation.

Our model: community-led solutions

Compelling examples from dozens of countries show that community-led solutions can rebuild fisheries, safeguard biodiversity and bolster resilience. We have developed a simple model for rebuilding fisheries, centred on supporting coastal communities to gain formal rights to access, use, and manage their fisheries, and strengthening the capacity of local governance bodies to make, implement and evaluate decisions over fisheries and ecosystems. Our model is grounded in the collection, analysis and feedback of robust data, with collection led by communities themselves. Management starts with simple measures such as periodic fishery closures, which in time catalyse broader marine conservation initiatives, such as the creation of locally managed marine areas.

Our 2030 goal

Our strategy focuses on empowering local partners to drive lasting change. We support these organisations to adapt our model to their context and then provide the catalytic funding, tailored technical support, real-time data and peer networks to enable multiple communities to expand the model across entire regions. By 2030, we aim to support 400 local partners to reach 10,000 coastal communities across Southeast Asia, West Africa, East Africa, and the Western Indian Ocean. This will protect over 200,000km² of carbon-rich coastal seas and benefit 5 million people through improved fishing income, secured food supply, and greater climate resilience.

Upholding fishers’ rights

Advocating for small-scale fishers’ rights is integral to our mission. We work tirelessly to secure coastal communities' access to and management of marine resources, exclude destructive industrial fishing practices from nearshore waters, and promote transparent fisheries governance. We also amplify the voices of small-scale fishers, ensuring their priorities shape global ocean dialogue and policies.