Planting mangroves
© Rene Arnold

RISK Award Vietnam -
Strong women for resilience

Final report

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    In July, the "Strong Roots, Strong Women" project came to an end – for the time being. Together with the University of Potsdam, we accompanied the non-profit organisation CSRD in Vietnam for two years. The focus was on disaster prevention by and for women as well as the establishment of a mangrove nursery. Time for a brief summary.

    New mangrove nursery collaborations

    Mangroves in nursery
    © Antonia Witthoff / Munich Re Foundation
    Mangroves in the nursery

    In the last few months, the team has managed to secure further 5 hectares of land in the Tam Giang lagoon as reforestation space for our mangroves. This area is located in Con Chim in the Phu Gia commune. It is an already protected area. The reforestation here is financed by the restaurant chain Mori, which we were able to win as a sponsor in the course of the project. Around 5000 mangroves will contribute to making the coast safer in the near future.

    In another nearby commune, Quang Loi, a further local partner, Forest Link, is supporting the reforestation of mangroves around the fish ponds in 2024. This prevents erosion and enables fishermen to moor their boats safely during strong winds. Damage and losses due to disasters can thus be prevented. In total, 13,000 € of private sector money has been raised   for 2023, which will be used to plant mangroves and maintain the the Nursery even beyond the period of our RISK Award project.

    Capacity training

    Performance Quang Thai
    © CSRD
    Local theatre group explaining their play

    In the course of the project, a variety of capacity trainings have been carried out. Workshops, theatre plays and more. In addition to the topic of disaster preparedness, the main focus was on alternative livelihoods when traditional options are no longer available due to environmental or climate changes or other risks. The new livelihoods focused on nature-based solutions. The most promising approaches, which were developed in a participatory process with women from the project communities, have now been summarised and are available as a livelihood manual. A first edition will be distributed.

    The theatre plays were accompanied by surveys to measure the impact of the capacity training. The results are promising. In the current reporting phase of the project, another 350 surveys were digitised and analysed. Results show, for example, that people who attended the theatre plays exhibit higher risk perceptions and consider ecosystems to be more important for disaster risk reduction. Respondents also reported higher knowledge of what to do in case of a flood event, a higher ability to undertake measures to prevent or reduce flood and storm impacts.  

    Dissemination of results

    Audience Workshop
    © CSRD
    Project partners in dialogue with local partners and beneficiaries

    Our dissemination activities have also advanced significantly. In collaboration with the local TV station, CSRD produced a film clip about the project, which was broadcasted in TTH province.

    The final workshop and the project were widely covered by local media, associations and the local government. The theatre play of the winner of the first Eco-DRR Theatre Festival from Quang Loi was captured in a film clip. The film can be used by the Women's Union, the Disaster Management Centre and other interested organisations in their awareness raising and capacity building activities and is available on YouTube.

    Publications, articles, videos and more


    Why did we write "for the time being" in the teaser? The nursery itself will of course continue to produce seedlings that can be sold. This alone is a sustainable success of the RISK Award project and means that the end of our funding is not the end of the project. But we also hope to continue the cooperation far beyond the RISK Award. Together with our project partners, we have applied for an EU-Call for Climate Adaptation, Women's Empowerment and Green Jobs. The submission of the concept note was already successful and we hope to receive a positive response to our full proposal by the end of the year. In this case, the project could massively be scaled up and expanded with the help of the EU funding of 700,000 €. We express our full gratitude to the University of Potsdam and CSRD. The two years - still heavily influenced by Corona at the beginning - were remarkable in many ways.
    CB, 2 October 2023