Increasing Adaptation and Resilience of Natural Resources Users and Community Stakeholders of Corozal Bay Wildlife Sanctuary to Predicted Climate Change Impacts.
Increasing Adaptation and Resilience of Natural Resources Users and Community Stakeholders of Corozal Bay Wildlife Sanctuary to Predicted Climate Change Impacts.
Corozal Bay Wildlife Sanctuary is considered an eco-regional priority site within the Mesoamerican reef. The large, transboundary, estuarine system has a high degree of natural resource integrity, with large expanses of mangroves and seagrass providing important ecosystem services to the adjacent coastal communities. However, the area is also identified as at the highest national risk of climate change impacts, with more frequent heat waves and droughts, less predictable, more intense rainfall leading to increased flooding, and rising sea levels with associated saline intrusion. This, in a district with the highest rate of poverty increase and heavy reliance on climate-dependent agriculture and fishing, makes three of these communities - Sarteneja, Chunox and Copper Bank - among the most vulnerable in Belize. Community consultations in all three communities have demonstrated that 100% of the participants surveyed (n=67, including community leaders, small farmers, fishermen, tour guides, women, teachers and students,) consider that neither they nor their communities are prepared for climate change and the significant impacts it is predicted to have on the area, its natural resources and community livelihoods.
This project, developed by the community-based Sarteneja Alliance for Conservation and Development (SACD) following a series of community consultations, focuses on strengthening management interventions for climate change adaptation for Corozal Bay Wildlife Sanctuary and its primary stakeholder communities, building awareness in Sarteneja, Chunox and Copper Bank of the value of the Wildlife Sanctuary and its coastal mangroves in protecting and assisting the communities in adapting to climate change. It also focuses on the critical need to assist communities and those community sectors identified as most at risk to take their first steps towards adaptation, increasing community resilience and decreasing community vulnerability. This is to be achieved through 1) building climate change resilience in the highly vulnerable, local artisanal fishing industry; 2) increasing awareness of climate change, its predicted impacts and potential adaptation mechanisms in these communities, with the associated development of participatory community adaptation plans.
The project benefits from collaboration with the National Climate Change Office, the Faculty of Science and Technology of the University of Belize, El Colegio de la Frontera Sur (Quintana Roo), the Belize Fisheries Department and Wildtracks – these organizations will be providing capacity building and training support for project activities.
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Project Snapshot

Sarteneja Alliance for Conservation and Development
Area Of Work:
Climate Change Mitigation
Grant Amount:
US$ 39,829.50
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 15,575.56
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 39,952.90
Project Number:
Satisfactorily Completed
Project Characteristics and Results
Gender Focus
In Sarteneja, in particular, the women play a key role in the community, with the majority of men being active fishermen, away from the community during much of the year. Whilst not providing financial input to their families, the women are the fabric that holds the community together. There are an increasing number of community organizations, including the Sarteneja Homestay Group, an initiative of SACD and fishermen’s wives, and Las Sartenejeñas Cooperative, which seek to empower women, and provide them with greater earning potential, to reduce household reliance on the income from fishing.
Capacity - Building Component
Objective Two focuses on preparing the three north-east communities for the predicted climate change impacts. Consultations have demonstrated that the current level of knowledge and planning is virtually non-existent within the communities, with village leaders don’t have access to the information required to make long term decisions.
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Grantee Contact

Mr. Joel Verde
Phone: 501 614 8244


North Front Street, Sarteneja Village
Corozal District , +501

SGP Country office contact

Mr. Leonel Requena
(501) 822-2462


UNDP Belize,3rd Floor, Lawrence Nicholas Building Complex ,P.O. Box 53,South Ring Road,
Belmopan, Central America