Local Management of Blue Economy Resources for Sustainable Livelihoods
Local Management of Blue Economy Resources for Sustainable Livelihoods
Placencia is one of several thriving unique tourism destinations in Belize that has experienced rapid economic growth over the years. Generally, there is a positive perception of the community’s growth; however, locally there are several issues that the community faces. In stakeholder discussions, it was agreed that poor participation of local stakeholders in resource management is the main problem in the community. This problem has resulted in several other issues that also affect the community.

The project aims to address the main problem and several other issues by contributing to an effective protected areas system in Belize. Specifically, the project will improve local stewardship in the management of blue economy resources for sustainable livelihoods. This will be done by building the capacity of the PTGCSL in order to facilitate legal income-generating opportunities for its members and the broader community. There are three objectives of the project:
• Objective 1 – Functional and Viable Pro Biodiversity Tour Operating Business Established.
• Objective 2 – Local marine tourism excursions are operational.
• Objective 3 – Relationship with Blue Economy Resources Managers established and improved.

The project contributes to the Blue Economy Programme of the GEF SGP under the following theme and activities:

• Nature-based Tourism
• Pilot and test community-managed eco-tourism initiatives.
• Capacity Development in nature-based tourism.

The Placencia Tour Guide Cooperative Society Limited (PTGCSL) will implement the project. This Cooperative was registered in June 2014 and is comprised of 14 members from Placencia Village.

The project is expected to cost BZ $215,162.00 of which BZ$100,000.00 is being requested from GEF SGP. Co-financing will be provided by PTGCSL (BZ$70,962.00) and Southern Tourism Alliance (BZ$44,200.00).
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Project Snapshot

Placencia Tour Guide Cooperative Society Ltd
Area Of Work:
International Waters
Grant Amount:
US$ 50,000.00
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 35,481.00
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 22,100.00
Project Number:
Currently under execution
Project Characteristics and Results
Gender Focus
A rapid gender analysis was carried out as part of the situational analysis during project design. Currently, there are no female members of the PTGSCL. In fact, there are very few females tour guides from southeastern Belize as the profession is male-dominated. Absence of female tour guides is mainly as a result of many females still primarily seeking work in the more traditional female tourism roles like waitressing, housekeeping, and other areas within the hotel sector. Many females also become responsible for the homes and take care of the children instead of seeking employment. Efforts will be made to include female tour guides where they exist as part of the PTGSCL policy for this project. Males traditionally have had greater access to income-generating opportunities in tour guiding because they were always the target for training through development agencies in the past. As fishermen, they benefitted from alternative livelihood initiatives that allowed them to develop their tour guiding skills and in some cases retrofitting existing fishing vessel to carry tours. Both within the tourism population and in the broader community, men have greater access and control of economic and political resources than women. As part of PTGSCL policy guidelines on this project, women will be included wherever they can be.
Inovative Financial Mechanisms
Lessons learned and good practices will be documented via progress reports. This information, along with pictures and videos capturing the work of the PTGCSL will be compiled and used to develop a video documentary of the Cooperative. The documentary will highlight the work of the Cooperative and will be used as part of its marketing campaign. Access will be made available through a website to be developed and at the Cooperative’s office in Placencia.
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SGP Country office contact

Mr. Leonel Requena
(501) 822-2462


UNDP Belize,3rd Floor, Lawrence Nicholas Building Complex ,P.O. Box 53,South Ring Road,
Belmopan, Central America