Whaling ecotourism develops to Mahajanga/Boeny
The project "Valorization of the migration of humpback whales along the Malagasy coasts during the austral winter", funded by the European Union and the IOC, theAssociation Cetamada has implemented actions related to whaling ecotourism sustainable and responsible, environmental education in schools, community development (crafts) as well as participatory science on marine mammals on 4 action sites, including Mahajanga.
A local team in Mahajanga made up of a focal point, scientific trainee and a community intern has been implemented since October 2017 and worked on the project for a year.
Local guides, fishermen, artisans and schools were the main beneficiaries of the project.
The arrival of the Cetamada-IOC to Mahajanga project allows to develop the activity safaris whales adopting a responsible and sustainable marine mammal observation. The popularization of knowledge about humpback whales, the awareness and accountability of users of the sea in respect of the code of conduct are also needed.
On the community development component, 9 artisans Majungais (sculpture courses, basketry, cutting and sewing and art in a bottle of sand) benefited from the support of the project by developing products in conjunction with the whales and the sea. The Regional Directorate of Culture, the promotion of crafts and the preservation of heritage has certified these craftsmen after their training.
This win-win partnership will be used as leverage to local sustainable economic development and the improvement of the living conditions of local communities of the areas frequented by humpback whales.
Reminder, Cetamada is a Malagasy law non-profit association founded in may 2009. The goal is the preservation of the populations of marine mammals and their habitat in Madagascar. By involving local people in its actions, the association is committed to a sustainable development approach. Cetamada supports the implementation of economic activities around marine mammals that generate direct income for communities.
Based on the island of Sainte Marie, to the northeast of Madagascar, the association acts on the whole Malagasy territory, including Fort Dauphin, Mahambo, Mahajanga, Maroantsetra, Nosy Be and Toliara.
The 4 areas of action :
Management and promotion of a sustainable ecotourism
Education and awareness of the environment and marine heritage
The development of community activities
The coming of humpback whales contributes to an increase in tourism on the coast of Madagascar. Cetamada, supported by its partners, takes actions to develop marine tourism sustainable and responsible.
As part of responsible for observation of marine mammals in their natural environment association Cetamada partners recruited for the season 2018 expert guides so-called eco voluntary, trained by Cetamada with the Ministry of tourism.
Eco volunteering helps young people, Malagasy and foreign, to participate in a unique experience in Madagascar during the season of humpback whales. For some, It is a child's dream, for others, eco-volunteering allows you to gain a first professional experience in the world of marine mammals and conservation of the environment. But for all these volunteers, working in contact with humpback whales remains the top motivations.