Mangrove Sister Schools Initial Visit: Potential of Mangrove for Education and Conservation in Indonesia

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Semarang – Mangroves, as coastal vegetation that are found in South East Asia especially in Indonesian archipelago, have plentiful potential and benefits. The plants, that are useful as a retaining defense for coastal erosion, are also home for organisms in the sea like small fishes. Furthermore, the local people reside around mangroves are used to utilize mangroves in order to improve their economy. Seeing the numerous potential of mangroves for ecology and for life skills development, it is necessary to conduct mangroves conservation in schools.

SEAMEO Mangrove Education and Conservation program is initiated by SEAMEO SPAFA in Thailand. Through this program, mangroves are used as an integrated science learning and conservation resource in school. Moreover, mangroves are also used as a medium to develop life skills in society. Being aware of the potential of this program, a team from 3 SEAMEO centres in Indonesia conducted an initial visit and survey to several schools in which one of them will be selected as a Mangrove Sister School as a part of the Mangrove Education and Conservation programme. The event was held on March 13th-15th, 2017 in Central Java with participation from 3 SEAMEO Centres: BIOTROP as the leading centre, SEAMOLEC, and QITEP in Science. QITEP in Science was represented by Dr. Indarjani and M. Haidar Helmi. This SEAMEO team was also accompanied by a team from IKAMAT foundation and UNDIP as a liaison of the event.

The visited schools in this event were MI Al-Hidayah Semarang, SDN 1 Bedono Demak, SDN 2 Bedono Demak, and SMPN 3 Satu Atap Demak. The schools were chosen because they were located near the ecosystem of mangrove and having potential to be improved in terms of education and conservation.

written by Amallia Yuliana

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