ACTING MAKES YOU HAPPY
In 2012, Martin Colognoli, marine biologist, and Guillaume Holzer, marketing graduate, founded Coral Guardian. A 1901 law association recognized as being of general interest, 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 solidarity organization dedicated to the conservation of coral ecosystems, raising awareness, scientific research and the enhancement of marine ecosystems. Coral Guardian aims to promote innovative approaches to marine conservation and encourage sustainable development models by deploying multiple angles of action.
We propose realistic and optimistic solutions through federating programs aimed at everyone: local communities, the general public, young people, businesses and communities.
We are an association committed to the preservation of marine ecosystems through five areas of intervention, harmoniously combining the preservation of marine ecosystems, the enhancement of biodiversity and sustainable development. This improves the participation of local communities in accelerating sustainable development mechanisms to improve their livelihoods.
We have developed a social approach of marine conservation based on basic needs and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (arts. 22, 25 and 27). … all peoples may freely dispose of their natural wealth and resources…. Under no circumstances shall a people be deprived of its 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.