The World Heritage Youth Project on Marine Biodiversity & Climate Change, held from 25th to 29th of January 2016 in Panama at the World Heritage site of Coiba National Park and its special zone of marine protection, was organized in the framework of the World Heritage Education Programme in cooperation with MarViva Foundation.
The World Heritage Youth Project on Marine Biodiversity & Climate Change aims to strengthen links between Caribbean Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and Central American countries (CAM) by empowering young people and their organizations as well as imrpoving their capacity for planning World Heritage conservation projects.
14 youth aged between 20 and 30 years of age, from 14 countries (Barbados, Belize, Cuba, Costa Rica, Dominica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, Saint Lucia, and Suriname) were selected; each with background experiences in projects related to marine biodiversity and climate change.
The participants had the opportunity to discuss different topics related to biodiversity, the impact of climate change and the management of the World Heritage site of Coiba National Park with local experts and researchers.
They also presented their past or current projects on marine biodiversity, climate change, or sustainable development.
The site manager introduced the participants to Coiba National Park’s terrestrial (primary and secondary forests, mangrove) and marine ecosystems (sandy and rocky shores, coral reefs) during field trips to the main island of Coiba and diving on the island of Granita de Oro.
Participants observed, analyzed and documented the flora and fauna of the site with the aim of making tourists trail maps which they presented to the national park management.
During their group work, the participants focused their discussion on the following three topics:
They came up with some recommendations and follow up actions to be taken:
In addition, the participants proposed three activities sheet targeting young people between 13 and 18 years of age.