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Pride Campaign: The Philippines
Country: The Philippines
Partner: The Katala Foundation
Campaign Manager: Indira Lacerna-Widmann
Project Area: Dumaran Municipality, Palawan, The Philippines
Campaign Goal: To conserve the remaining forests and wildlife of Dumaran, Palawan, Philippines for present and future generations
Principal Threats: During the initial stakeholders meeting, direct threats identified included the kaingin (or slash and burn) farming system which, when uncontrolled, contributes to forest fires, hunting, trapping, logging, silica mining, conversion of forest to agricultural lands, and sand and gravel quarrying. There is a lack of knowledge of wildlife and forest laws and of the implications of the loss of wildlife species and their habitats, and a perception that poor law enforcement exists due to a lack of political will.
Underlying these problems is an increase in poverty and population due to immigration and increasing birthrates. The restriction of the campaign’s flagship species to extreme lowland habitats makes it more vulnerable to human activities. Main threats to the species are poaching for the pet trade, destruction of the lowland habitats, particularly coastal and lowland dipterocarp forests, and some persecution of it as an agricultural pest.
Flagship Species: The Philippine cockatoo (Cacatua haematuropygia), known locally as the "Katala"
Campaign Slogan: Share a Place to Live!
Notable Information from the Questionnaire Survey:
- Survey results suggested that 75% of the respondents perceived that habitat destruction is a cause of the decline of the Philippine Cockatoo population, the flagship species. 72% suggested that this decline is caused by poaching and hunting.
- The top three perceived threats to the environment of Dumaran are logging (78%), kaingin practice (73%), and fire (22%).
- 62.2% of the respondents or their immediate families are engaged in Kaingin.
- A very high percentage of the sample population does not know about three important laws relating to environmental protection and conservation. 75% said they do not know about the Wildlife Act of 2001, 79% do not know the Strategic Environmental Plan for Palawan and 84% know nothing about the National Integrated Protected Areas System or Republic Act (7586).
- In the last six months, 52% of the respondents used Dumaran forests for firewood collection while about 45% collect non-timber forest products like honey, orchids and rattan for furniture and house decorations from the forest.
Campaign SMART Objectives:
- Objective 1: After two years of project implementation, 75% of Dumaran population (up from 39.5%) believe that cockatoos, other wildlife and people could live together in harmony
- Objective 2: After one year, 70% of the general public of the island-based population (up from 48.4%) can say why the Katala should be protected
- Objective 3: By the end of two years of program implementation, 50% of the population will say they know about the Wildlife Act (down from 76% who didn’t know) and Strategic Environmental Plan for Palawan (down from 79% who didn’t know)
- Objective 4: After two years of program implementation, two of the remaining cockatoo habitats in Sitio Omoi, Bgy. Sto. Tomas (ca. 60 ha.) and Bgy. San Juan (ca. 20 ha.) will be formally protected under municipal laws
- Objective 5: After two years of project implementation, a thousand native and indigenous trees are planted around the buffer zones of the two protected areas, helping to fill out the forest fragments, with at least half of those planted surviving (past 12 months of being planted)
- Objective 6: Within two years of the project’s implementation, 50 farmers from the two proposed protected areas will be organized and trained on alternative farming techniques to the traditional Kaingin system
- Objective 7: By the end of two years of project implementation, the percentage of the general public from barangays (Bgy.) Sto. Tomas and San Juan who say they have reported illegal activities will increase in the two barangays where the proposed protected areas are located; for Bgy. Sto. Tomas, it will increase to 25%, up from 6.3%, and in Bgy. San Juan it will increase to 20%, up from 1.6%
- Objective 8: By the end of one year of project implementation, the percentage of the general public in both island and mainland Dumaran who have not heard anything about the Philippine cockatoo will decrease from 41.2% to 20%
Highlights from the Results (based on pre- and post-campaign surveys):
- 76% (up from 39%) of the target population believes that the Philippine cockatoo, formerly regarded as an agricultural pest, and other wildlife could live together in the same area.
- To help protect Dumaran’s forest and wildlife, 45% (up from 3%) of participants said they had reported illegal activities to the authorities in the past six months.
- A legally protected area was established to ensure protection of the Cockatoo’s nesting habitat, and six active community members are now working as wildlife wardens.
Lacerna-Widmann also initiated an alternative livelihood project to encourage a movement away from dependence on slash and burn agriculture by establishing a fruit and vegetable farm.
Index to CEPF-supported Pride campaigns
© Marldes Van Delft
The Katala Foundation’s campaign led by Indira Lacerna-Widmann (pictured here with the mascot for her campaign) convinced officials to protect 60 hectares of crucial feeding, nesting and roosting ground for the Philippine cockatoo.
© The Katala Foundation
Lacerna-Widmann developed this sticker, a poster, a button, and other materials for the campaign.