Over forty local and international conservationists met Tuesday to discuss communication strategies in preservation activities at a training course co-organized by the Ho Chi Minh City-based Center for Biodiversity and Development (CBD) and the Norwegian Institute for Agricultural and Environmental Research (Bioforsk) in the Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap.
| Ragnar Vaga Pedersen, in charge of communication work at Bioforsk, presents at Tuesday's training course in Dong Thap Province |
The environmentalists, coming from the organizers and natural reserves around the country, have discussed effective ways to communicate their conservation messages to the surrounding community in order to raise their awareness of environmental protection, as well as the conservation work at local natural sites.
Ragnar Vaga Pedersen, in charge of communication at Bioforsk, told Tuoitrenews that communication is not given enough attention at Vietnamese natural reserves, which have so far focused too much on the professional side only.
“They have focused on professional areas and protection, and have done a lot of good work with local populations, but they are not looking at communication as a sub-profession,” Pedersen pointed out.
Good communication is necessary if conservation messages are to reach a wider audience, he said.
It is very important in conservation to get local people looking at their surrounding areas as an economic asset instead of perceiving them simply as nature.
“If they take care of this environment, then they also have something that they can live from in the future.”
Dr Vu Ngoc Long, CBD director, said that communication was a very important and efficient tool to encourage environmental protection among local communities.
A long-term communication strategy is what CBD is aiming for, Dr Long revealed.
“In five years, we will try to finish working out a strategic framework for the communication work in conservation activities at natural reserves in southern Vietnam.”
The course is continuing with a field trip to Tram Chim National Park in Tam Nong District on Wednesday.