FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA, Onongoch, Fefen Island, Chuuk - July 2010
Community hall, water tanks and toilets in exchange for the protection of a 15-acre pristine upland forest as a no-take area in perpetuity
Marked as a top conservation target for the island state of Chuuk for its health and significance, and known as a sacred area for generations, the Chunuf forest area is part of the West Fefen Area of Biodiversity Significance. The forest is home to several endangered and threatened bird, plant and tree species. With a population of over 400 the Onongoch community on Fefen Island has, due to traditional practices and certain chiefly taboos, conserved and worked around the forest for many years, and want it to be officially recognized as a conservation area. The Chuuk Conservation Society is providing assistance in the creation of a management plan for the new forest reserve. Seacology is funding the construction of a meeting hall with office space, as well as 10 500-gallon water tanks and 10 toilets for the neediest members of the community, in exchange for an agreement to protect 15 acres of pristine upland forest as a no-take area in perpetuity.
UPDATE January 2011 - As of January 2011, renovation is almost completed - floor, roofing, and beams have been renovated, and the extension with office space will be completed by the end of January 2011.
UPDATE June 2011 - First phase of construction was completed and the second tranche of funds were transferred in March 2011. The renovation of the community hall and upstairs office is completed except for finishing work. Toilet bowls and necessities will be distributed and installed by the end of April 2011. Ten water catchments have already been paid for but are awaiting shipment to Chuuk by the local vendor. The conservation work is progressing and members of the community help to patrol the area, maintain the land and care for trees.
Indicates full or partial funding by Seacology Scandinavia