In 2012, Martin Colognoli, marine biologist, and Guillaume Holzer, marketing graduate, founded Coral Guardian in order to put their skills and experience to good use in the service of marine ecosystems and local communities.
Coral Guardian is a French non-profit international organization dedicated to the conservation of coral reef ecosystems, raising awareness, scientific research and the development of marine ecosystems for communities that depend on them for subsistance. Coral Guardian aims to promote innovative approaches to marine conservation and encourage sustainable development models by exploring an array of different environmental, social and scientific possibilities.
We offer realistic and positive solutions through the development of programs aimed at everyone: local communities, the general public, young people, businesses and communities.
We are an organization committed to preserving marine ecosystems, harmoniously combining the conservation of marine ecosystems through the implication of local communities, biodiversity valorization and scientific research.
We have developed a social approach for marine conservation based on the basic needs defined by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (arts. 22, 25 and 27):
« All people must freely dispose of their natural wealth and resources […] Under no circumstances should people be deprived of their own means of subsistence. »
Why do we have to act now?
40% of coral reefs have already disappeared due to human activities and global warming, and scientists estimate that if nothing is done in the next 5 years they will have completely disappeared from the Earth’s surface by 2050.
Our solution addresses a problem of food sovereignty of local populations, sustainable management of coral reefs and associated fishing stocks, adaptation and resistance of corals to ocean warming, preservation and enhancement of marine ecosystems, redevelopment of the local marine food chain and protection of marine biodiversity spot hotspots.
“You tell me, I forget. You teach me, I remember. You involve me, I learn.”
Participatory marine conservation
The concept of participatory conservation is based on the idea that effective biodiversity protection requires the improvement of the living conditions of local populations, users of this nature, their participation in its conservation and their capacity to sustainably manage the ecosystems on which they depend. But they need support, knowledge, and resources. We are working to address these needs and to train local communities in the sustainable and self-sustaining management of coral ecosystems, based on science and practice.
In concrete terms, the solution lies in involving local communities and making them guardians of our ecosystems. We have developed a 5-step program to educate and train fishers in sustainable coral reef management.
To understand the importance of coral reefs in the marine ecosystem, we articulate awareness and training around coral reef restoration, allowing them to be directly and tangibly involved.