INDONESIA, Kahuku Village, Bangka Island, North Sulawesi - July 2010
Village health clinic in exchange for the creation of 74 acres of no-take coral reef and in support of an additional 27 acres of no-take coral reef
Desa Kahuku is a village located on the island of Bankga, about six miles offshore the North Sulawesi mainland and about 24 miles northeast from the nearest large town of Manado. The village had a health clinic built for them in 1994, which is in a crumbling state as salty beach sand was used in the concrete mixture, causing the metal re-bar to rust into flakes and the brickwork to become soft and sodden. Also, the building has no beds or medical equipment, and receives very little support from the local health department. The villagers wish to set aside and protect approximately one mile of fringing coral reef, totaling approximately 74 acres as a no-take zone for 10 years. The reef has had considerable pressure put upon it from destructive fishing practices over the past decades, especially from outside villages using cyanide to catch lobster and reef fish. Seacology is providing funding to Kahuku Village for the reconstruction of their health clinic (with clean sand), as well as beds and medical equipment, in exchange for the village’s creation of a 74-acre no-take coral reef and in support of an additional 27 acres of no-take coral reef. *
UPDATE January 2011 - The first stage of funds was used to fix the roof and install the boundary markers for the marine "no-take area." The villagers and hired labor worked together to clean up the existing building site. Wood, roof tiles, nails and simple tools were then purchased to begin re-construction work of the existing health clinic. The materials were purchased in the capital city of Manado and then brought to the small coastal town of Likupang (about 1.5 hrs by road) and then transferred by boat to the island (another 30 minutes by sea). The cost of purchasing and transporting materials from Manado is somewhat cheaper than purchasing them from hardware stores in Likupang. The rotting parts of the roof were removed and replaced with new wooden 2x4s. The sheet metal roof was replaced with higher quality composite metal roof tiles, which have a much longer life, especially in coastal conditions where metal roofs are prone to rusting quickly. The new roof is fully completed. Boundary markers, plastic buoys with a styrofoam core, were installed to delineate the boundaries of the "no-take" area, which includes the existing 27-acre section of reef declared a community protected area in 2003, as well as the additional 74 acres added in the Seacology agreement (totaling 101 acres).
UPDATE June 2011 - The re-construction of the building is complete and has officially been handed over to the health department staff. The project leader, Patrys, had added a covered permanent outdoor waiting area to the front of the building as the villagers wanted this addition to the building rather than purchasing furniture. Villagers in North Sulawesi prefer to sit and wait on the veranda rather than inside buildings. Field Representative Arnaz Mehta will travel to see the project firsthand in early June.