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Global Collaboration for Coral Restoration at the CORDAP Workshop

CORDAP participants  and Global South members converge and smile for a group photo. Photo courtesy of CORDAP.


Delegates representing the Global South converged from March 12th to 15th, 2024 amidst the tranquil ambiance of Kenya’s Mombasa coast for the G20 Coral Research and Development Accelerator Platform (CORDAP) Capacity Development Workshop. The workshop's goal was to develop a roadmap that increases involvement in coral restoration, promotes scientific partnerships, and ensures equal accessibility opportunities to developing nations.  

 

CORDAP aims to accelerate global research and development with essential technologies and innovations to help safeguard the future of coral reefs. In collaboration with Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association (WIOMSA), participants engaged in valuable discussions about the challenges and opportunities facing the Western Indian Ocean. Participants also delved into the crucial aspects of successful coral restoration efforts on both a global and local scale and pinpointed ways to enhance local collaborations given their vital role in community conservation endeavors.  


CRF™’s Reef Restoration Program Manager Phanor Montoya-Maya discussing with fellow participants of the CORDAP workshop. Photo courtesy of CORDAP.


From discussions at this conference, it is evident that the absence of accessibility and effective communication has resulted in missed opportunities. While the shift to virtual conferences may be environmentally conscious, it overlooks technological hurdles such as connectivity and electricity. Due to these limitations, many individuals are compelled to attend in-person events, which bears its own financial barriers. Hence, cultivating an inclusive industry environment demands overcoming both the digital divide and cost obstacles that prevent equitable access to these collaboration platforms. 


CRF™’s contributions to the workshop covered a range of topics including Cerulean™, Coral Trees™, as well as insights from our white papers. CRF™ had the opportunity to hear the needs of numerous restoration practitioners and organizations, enabling us to better align our restoration and education objectives. Eager to find solutions, the workshop concluded that hosting more in-person meetings in the Global South enables more widespread participation and ease when transferring skills from one organization to another.   

 

The participants savor Mombasa’s beautiful waters together after the CORDAP workshop. Photo courtesy of CORDAP.


Serving as CRF’s presence at the workshop, our Reef Restoration Program Manager Phanor Montoya-Maya shared, “This workshop is a reminder that the joy we find in our work is as vital as the outcomes we achieve. Let's keep supporting each other, sharing knowledge, and recognizing the unique contributions of every coral reef conservation and restoration researcher and practitioner, regardless of where they are in the world!” 

 

Initiatives like this workshop are precisely what the industry requires to thrive in the future. While various organizations focus on different aspects of coral health, we are all united in pursuit of the same objective, restoring our reefs for future generations.  


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