In 2010, Sytel Limited began a programme to devote a proportion of its annual profits (2%) to supporting resource conservation in a less developed country. In partnership with the Fisheries Division of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF) in Samoa, Sytel became a financial sponsor to the village of Lepuia'i on Manono Island, next to the Samoan mainland.
Following are updates on how the project progressed:
With this sponsorship, Sytel built a relationship with the Lepuia'i villagers which encouraged them to invest in fisheries conservation and development for the benefit of their village and also other communities on Manono Island. We saw a direct connection between our sponsorship and the conservation and development activities undertaken by the villagers, who set up a local bank account for the purpose. The project demonstrated how targeted local sponsorship can keep any and all administrative overheads to a minimum. We hoped to inspire other companies like ourselves to offer aid to developing nations by adopting a similar direct model.
With Sytel's support, the Lepuia'i villagers are re-established and strengthened their marine/fish reserve area as a way to regenerate fisheries resources and build capacity, providing both food security and local income. They encouraged active participation of the whole community, and built awareness of the sustainable management and development of their marine resources.
The villagers with guidance from MAF are tackling several priority areas:
Ongoing monitoring and management was conducted by both the Village Fisheries Committee and the Samoan Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, who were jointly responsible for managing the activities and ensuring that the sponsorship funds are spent appropriately in line with the declared aims and goals. Sytel made occasional visits to further develop the relationship.
Sytel concluded its sponsorship of the fisheries conservation with the Lepuia'i village at the start of 2017 having achieved the aims originally set.
We wish all the Lepuia'i villagers success for the future and would like to thank them for the effort they have shown during this project.
Sytel is now considering the next project to sponsor and is looking forward to building new relationships elsewhere.
Check back here soon to find out more.
Sytel CEO Michael McKinlay with the villagers
Giant clam monitoring
Inshore marine survey - Manono Island
Sunset on Manono Island
Training for monitoring of giant clams
Lepuia'i village meeting