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Building Ivisan Organisations along Shorelines for Inclusive, Environment-Friendly, and Low Carbon Development (BIOSHIELD) is a one-year project supported by ADM (Archer Daniels Midland) in Ivisan, Capiz in the Philippines. The project covers four coastal villages: Basio, Cudian, Balaring, and Agustin Navarra.

BIOSHIELD aims to rehabilitate Ivisan’s coastal mangroves to ensure the sustainability of various fisheries and provide bio-shields against climate-change impacts. In doing so, smallholder farmers and community members can improve livelihood sources through food diversification. In addition, the project aims to enhance the disaster preparedness of communities living in coastal areas.

Since its inception in June 2022, around three hectares of mangroves have been out-planted with 6,700 propagules of Bakawan (Rhizopora apiculate) and Piyapi (Abicenia marina) species, and two nurseries were established at Barangays Agustin Navarra and Cudian at 200 sqm and 50 sqm, respectively.

BIOSHIELD reached 165 families (825 individuals) through direct livelihood initiatives and 2,152 families (10,760 individuals) through disaster risk management programs.

To support coastal communities, particularly those affected by red tide, IIRR conducted a 3-day cash-for-work Coastal Clean up and Mangrove Bagging and out-planting activities.

Red tide is a phenomenon that occurs on the coastline when microscopic algae produce toxins that kill fish and make shellfish dangerous to consume and grow. Regularly occurring in Ivisan and lasting for up to four months, oyster farmers are greatly affected by red tide incidents, negatively affecting their income and food security.

In response, IIRR sought the participation of the Basiao Oyster Farmers Association and the Basiao Mangrove Association, led by chairs Nante Delos Reyes and Renita Valbarez, respectively. Around 97 oyster and mussel growers of the association benefited from the activity.

The fisherfolk expressed their appreciation for the activity, which helped them access immediate cash they could use to meet basic needs, such as medicine and food. Among the lines said by fisherfolks were, “come on, let’s pay our debts” after receiving their payouts.