Secure Fisheries works with fishing communities to promote sustainable approaches to fisheries development and management. Our work seeks to empower local fishers with tools and information needed to support long-term food and economic security.
Fishing is central to the well-being of coastal communities, especially those in fragile and post-conflict states. The long-term health of artisanal and subsistence fisheries is currently threatened by the expansion of global industrial fishing, including growing distant water fishing fleets. Community-based approaches to resource management recognize the important role these communities play in managing their fisheries and protecting artisanal fishers’ access to fisheries resources.
Fishing communities experience first-hand the effects of decreasing fish stocks and are therefore uniquely vulnerable to overfishing. Commercial fishers can out-compete small-scale fishers through greater access to technical information and modern technologies. To help level the playing field, and to support sustainable and successful exploitation of maritime resources, small-scale fishers need greater access to information, equipment, and technical training.
Likewise, communities are an important source of information on the current state of fisheries and the challenges they face. Local understanding of seasonal changes, structure of fishing grounds, and fish behavior can get lost in national data collection, but that knowledge is critical for successful capacity building and management.