Front Cover
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 The Cogtong Bay mangrove management...
 Objectives of the case study
 Women, work, and resource use in...
 Project implementation and women's...
 Potential for enhancing women's...
 Conclusions, recommendations, and...
 Annex 1: Socio-economic profi...
 Annex 2: Participant questionn...
 Annex 3: Questionnaire for project...
 Annex 4: List of people contac...
 Annex 5: Workshop materials
 Back Cover

Group Title: Women's participation in the Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project : a case study
Title: Women's participation in the Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00080044/00001
 Material Information
Title: Women's participation in the Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project a case study
Physical Description: iii, 56 p. : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Mehra, Rekha, 1947-
Alcott, Margaret
Baling, Nilda S
Publisher: International Center for Research on Women :
World Wildlife Fund
Place of Publication: Washington D.C
Publication Date: c1993
Subject: Women in development -- Philippines   ( lcsh )
Economic development projects -- Citizen participation -- Philippines   ( lcsh )
Mangrove swamps -- Economic aspects -- Philippines   ( lcsh )
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: Phillipines
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references (p. 28).
Statement of Responsibility: by Rekha Mehra, Margaret Alcott, and Nilda S. Baling.
General Note: "Collaborative research report"--Cover.
General Note: "Gender, community development, and conservation of biological resources"--Cover.
General Note: "March 1993."
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00080044
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 30373713

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Title Page
        Title Page
        Page i
        Page ii
        Page iii
    Table of Contents
        Page iv
        Page 1
        Page 2
    The Cogtong Bay mangrove management project
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
    Objectives of the case study
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
    Women, work, and resource use in Cogtong Bay
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
    Project implementation and women's involvement
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
    Potential for enhancing women's roles
        Page 21
        Page 22
    Conclusions, recommendations, and lessons learned
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
    Annex 1: Socio-economic profiles
        Page 29
    Annex 2: Participant questionnaire
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
    Annex 3: Questionnaire for project staff
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
    Annex 4: List of people contacted
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
    Annex 5: Workshop materials
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
    Back Cover
        Page 58
Full Text

Women's Participation in the
Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project:
A Case Study


Rekha Mehra, Margaret Alcott,
and Nilda S. Baling




Funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (U.S.A.I.D.)
Office of Women in Development and the Biodiversity Support Program,
a U.S.A.I.D.-funded program of World Wildlife Fund,
The Nature Conservancy, and World Resources Institute.

Women's Participation in the
Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project:
A Case Study


Rekha Mehra, Margaret Alcott,
and Nilda S. Baling

March 1993

International Center for Research on Women
1717 Massachusetts Avenue N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20036

World Wildlife Fund
1250 Twenty-Fourth St., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20037


With few exceptions, women are at the center of the environment and development nexus.
In most communities, women have a pivotal role in economic development and in challenging poverty.
They perform many of the agricultural tasks and raise small livestock, provide firewood and water,
generate substantial income for the family budget from sale of handicrafts, a variety of grown and
wild foods, firewood and other products, and care for their children and homesteads. To accomplish
their tasks, women are, formally or informally, resource managers. As conservation actors (i.e. any
individual who takes action regarding the management of natural resources) they must be fully
involved in the decision-making processes regarding resource use.

Thus, women must be integrated into conservation and development efforts to meet the dual
objectives of better management of the resource base and improved community welfare. The
challenge to development practitioners and conservationists is not only to involve women directly in
managing biological resources, but also to increase the productivity and efficiency of their labor,
which will contribute greatly to their community's ability to explore new economic and conservation

Within the international development and conservation communities, there is growing
recognition of the importance of women's roles in the development process and in natural resource
management. The primary vehicles through which most conservation and development agencies can
have an effect in this area are community projects. Thus, project design and implementation must
include a consideration of gender issues.

The objective of "The Gender Factor in Community Development and Resource Management"
project, of which this study is a part, is to heighten our awareness of the critical roles women play
in natural resource management and sustainable development, and to strengthen the skills of the staff
involved in the preparation and implementation of these projects. Staff require a new set of
conceptual and analytical perspectives and skills to deal explicitly, effectively, and efficiently with
women-related issues in the spectrum of conservation and development.

As the second paper in the series intended to examine the role of gender in community
development and resource management, this case study of the Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management
Project in the Philippines takes an in-depth look at the issue. It examines the extent and nature of
women's resource management roles and of their involvement in the project. In addition, the case
study identifies ways to enhance women's participation in conservation and resource management.

The priority and urgency of integrating women more fully into the development and
conservation process dictate that development practitioners and academics strengthen their analytical
approaches to this task. This publication and subsequent case studies are a step in that direction and,
we hope, they will stimulate other similar efforts by our colleagues in the development and
conservation communities.

Michael Paolisso
Director, Research Division
International Center for Research on Women (ICRW)

Barbara Wyckoff-Baird
Director, Wildlands and Human Needs Program
World Wildlife Fund (WWF)


The authors would like to thank the women of Cogtong Bay for'their willingness to talk about
their lives and work as well as the problems they face and their ideas for solving them.

We would also like to thank the staff of the Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project, the
Network Foundation, and the WWF-Philippine Program, especially Juanita "Nene" Pondoc, Bel
Navascues, Dick Edwards, and Carol Manuel for their organizational support and assistance.

We are grateful to Celinda Bertumen Cafiada and her associates for hospitality and wonderful
cuisine in Cogtong Bay.

And thanks to Barbara Wyckoff-Baird of WWF and Michael Paolisso of ICRW for their
support throughout the project.



Preface .................................................... ......... i

Acknowledgm ents .................................................... 11

1. Introduction ..................................................... 1

2. The Cogtong Bay Mangrove Project ................................... 3

3. Objectives of the Case Study ........................................ 9

4. M methodology .................................................... 10

5. Women, Work, and Resource Use in Cogtong Bay ........................ 13

6. Project Implementation and Women's Involvement ....................... 17

7. Potential for Enhancing Women's Roles ................................ 21

8. Conclusions, Recommendations, and Lessons Learned ..................... 23

R eferences ..................................................... 28


1. Socioeconomic Profiles of Three Barangays Participating
in the Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project .................. 29

2. Cogtong Bay Project, Participant Questionnaire
Economic/Resource Use Activity Profile ......... ................. 30

3. Cogtong Bay Project, Questionnaire for Project
Staff ..................................................... 34

4. List of People Contacted ...................................... 39

5. Training Materials from a Workshop Held in Mandaue City,
Cebu, August 27, 1992 ........................................ 42


1. Introduction

Found throughout the extensive coastline of the Philippines, mangroves represent a rich and
valuable ecosystem. By providing nurseries and spawning grounds, mangroves support many fish
species and crustaceans in the immediate areas and many miles offshore. They afford protection for
coastal environments by reducing erosion, controlling flooding, and reducing the damaging effects
of storms. They also maintain water quality by acting as silt traps and function as habitat to
important birds, mammals, and reptiles.

Mangroves also represent an important economic resource providing food, shelter, and
incomes for both traditional and commercial users. Apart from the fish and shellfish that flourish
in mangrove areas, they provide timber and fronds for a wide variety of uses, including fuelwood,
charcoal, scaffolding for houses, poles for fish corrals and fences, posts, and traps. The leaves of the
nipa--a variety of mangrove--are woven, dried and marketed for roofing for rural houses.
Mangroves are also used to culture milkfish (Chanos chanos) and, to a lesser degree, prawns (Vande
Vusse 1992). In addition, the seagrass meadows in the coastal areas contain valuable marine products
such as rabbitfish, mullet, blue crabs, sea cucumber, and seaweed.

The widespread use of mangroves has contributed directly to their depletion not just in
Cogtong Bay but throughout the Philippines. About 70 percent of the 450,000 hectares (ha) of
mangroves found in the Philippines early this century have been destroyed (World Bank 1989). Most
of what remains now is secondary growth of brush and young mangrove forests. The major source
of destruction was the felling of mangrove trees for log exports during the 1960s. Other factors
include open access to the resource and pressure from a growing population. A further source of
depletion is the unregulated conversion of mangroves for fishpond development (World Bank 1989).
The destruction of the mangrove habitat threatens related marine species dependent on the ecosystem.

The government has attempted to stem mangrove depletion by declaring, in December 1981,
approximately 78,393 ha of mangroves to be wilderness or forest reserves. The government has also
regulated the use and development of mangroves in other areas. These measures were reinforced by
a proclamation on environmental impact assessments that permitted challenges to the proposed
conversion of mangroves for industrial, tourism, and fishpond development. In 1990, an
administrative order of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) of the
Government of the Philippines made all mangrove areas except wilderness available for community
management, provided it is utilized sustainably (Vande Vusse 1992). The principles underlying

community management of mangroves include the idea that, as indigenous users are the real day-to-
day managers of the resource, management functions should be decentralized. A related idea is that
rehabilitation and management practices of local users can be enhanced by providing long-term
security of tenure. Pursuing of this idea, the DENR passed an administrative order in 1991 that
provided for awarding Mangrove Stewardship Certificates (MSC) to deserving users of mangrove

Community management and security of tenure were the two main principles underlying the
development of the Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project. The project was initially funded
from January 1989 to September 1991 by the United States Agency for International Development
(USAID)/Philippines, through the DENR as part of the larger Rainfed Resources Development
Project (RRDP). It was implemented by the Network Foundation, a non-governmental organization
(NGO) with headquarters in Mandaue City, Cebu, with staff based at the project site.2 The case
study on women's involvement in the project was undertaken in August 1992, almost a year after the
termination of USAID funding. During that period, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Philippines had
provided bridge funding for the continuation of the project. The funds did not actually become
available until early in 1992 and were sufficient to support only a few months of work at the site.

1 The MSC offers a 25-year renewable conditional lease to the steward who agrees to keep the
area under permanent mangrove cover (Vande Vusse 1992).

2 The original USAID contract was won by ACIPHIL, a rural development consulting firm. The
Network Foundation became ACIPHIL's partner and undertook implementation of the project when,
a few months after ACIPHIL had won the contract, it was found by USAID rules not to qualify as
a Philippine NGO.

2. The Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project

Cogtong Bay is located in the Central Visayas region of the Philippines in the southeast of the
island of Bohol. The project site incorporates about 2,000 ha of mangrove forest along the coast,
1,300 ha of which are vegetated. The rest of the mangroves, comprising 700 ha, have been converted
into fishponds--some legally and the rest illegally. The mangrove areas have been cut extensively in
the past but have recovered well. In addition, portions of the mangroves, covering four small
uninhabited islands at the mouth of the bay and totalling about 225 ha, have been set aside as
wilderness. They are well vegetated but with secondary bushy growth, having been cut repeatedly.
The Bay also contains about 3,000 ha of seagrass meadows (The Network Foundation n.d. and 1992).

The project area includes 14 coastal barangays (an administrative subdivision) and the two
municipalities of Candijay and Mabini, with a total population estimated at over 52,000, eighty-five
percent of which is self-employed, primarily as farmers (68 percent) and fishermen (9 percent in
Candijay and 15 percent in Mabini). The communities are poor--average annual household income
in 1988 was about P 4,800 or U.S. $228, well below the Philippines' per capital GNP of $630 (World
Bank 1990). Unemployment is high. Most people, in order to augment their earnings, engage in a
number of different occupations. These include carpentry, handicrafts, retail trade, and nipa-
weaving. Candijay is an active commercial center with 132 sari-sari or small general stores, rice
mills, and public markets. There is, by contrast, very little commercial activity in Mabini.

By way of services, most barangays have primary schools although facilities are inadequate.
The Bohol School of Fisheries, located in Cogtong, offers secondary and college education and many
of the graduates are from the local area. A large number are, however, unemployed. Access to health
services is limited. Only 5 percent of Cogtong's population has access to piped water. The rest of the
population must obtain water from individual public artesian wells, open wells, and springs.
Secondary roads and a portion of the national highway provide access to all shores of the Bay and to
the provincial capital of Tagbilaran City, about 92 km away.

As in other parts of the Philippines, mangroves and other coastal resources in Cogtong Bay
are seriously threatened. Factors contributing to resource depletion include cutting of mangroves for
firewood (for both household and commercial use) and illegal development of fishponds. The loss
of the mangrove habitat may also be contributing to declining fish harvests. Fish yields also have

been declining because of illegal fishing, especially the use of fine mesh nets, trawling, and
dynamiting. Dynamiting also destroys coral reefs, another contributor to loss of habitat for fish.

Destruction of mangroves and depletion of fish resources are serious problems because many
economic activities (both subsistence and income-earning) in Cogtong Bay center on these coastal
resources. While only a small percentage of the community claims fishing as the primary profession,
more than half of Candijay's residents reported production of nipa shingles as a secondary occupation.
Many families also rely on the mangroves to obtain shellfish, algae, crabs, oysters, and other marine
products for home consumption and sale.

Most of the fishing is done by artisanal or small-scale fishermen who own small boats and fish
with traditional gear such as handlines, gill nets, spears, cast nets, fish corrals, and fish traps. Even
though the small fishermen do not often harvest surpluses, they tend to sell or barter their limited
catch. The best fish are almost always sold, often to middlemen (or women) for resale in big
provincial cities, while lower quality fish are sold in local markets or consumed at home. Commercial
fishing, involving one commercial boat in Candijay and five Danish boats in northern Mabini, is done
just outside the project area.

A significant problem in maintaining habitat and sustainable resource use in the fisheries
sector of Cogtong Bay, as in other parts of the Philippines, is the potential for corruption among
officials of line agencies charged with protecting resources and ensuring their fair and equitable use.
Some local officials and richer, better capitalized, and more politically influential residents and
nonresidents contribute disproportionately to resource depletion. They are, moreover, not held
accountable for illegal use of resources from which they may obtain substantial profits (Francisco and
Israel 1991). For example, although mangrove harvesting is not permitted in Barangay Banas, certain
barangay officials harvested large quantities for commercial sale. Some fishpond developments in
Cogtong Bay are also illegal and, in one case, the mangrove has been converted to a fishpond but kept
unproductive. Besides having a devastating impact on coastal resources, such problems are an
important source of frustration and discontent among local people whose very survival depends on
these resources.

Project Objectives

The primary objective of the Cogtong Bay Project was to improve management of the Bay's
coastal resources by organizing local communities to undertake this responsibility for themselves
(Network Foundation n.d.). A key element of the strategy was to provide an incentive for better
management by giving individuals within the local communities (mostly small-scale fishermen and
farmers) secure tenure over specified coastal areas which they would manage. Specifically, the
project sought to accomplish the following tasks:

1. To organize the residents of eight coastal barangays to undertake the coastal resource
management activities listed in item 2 below.

2. To assist area residents to

a) rehabilitate 400 ha of mangrove forest using an Integrated Social Forestry (ISF)
approach and to award stewardship agreements over the rehabilitated areas;
b) construct and place 80 clusters of 25 concrete artificial reef modules each;
c) initiate the culture of commercial oysters and green mussels;
d) control the use of illegal and destructive fishing methods in the project area; and

3. To identify and test new approaches in mangrove rehabilitation and management.
Although not directly stated, an implicit goal of-the project in enabling participants to use
resources more sustainably was to help them improve their incomes and better themselves

Over the period of two and a half years during which the project received funding from
USAID, project staff succeeded in accomplishing many of the tasks outlined above, as shown in Table

A Summary of Project Targets and Accomplishments, January 1989-June 1991.

Activity 3-year 2.5-year % of
target accomp target

Coastal barangay organized 8 11 138
Fishermen's associations (FA) formed 8 13 163

Reforestation (ha) 75 150 200
Enrichment (ha) 300 100 33
Stewardship agreements issued 265 250 94
Assisted natural regeneration in wilderness areas (ha) 25 15 60
Rehabilitation of existing forest (ha) 0 27
Replanting of illegally cleared fishpond area (ha) 0 15
Prevention of five illegal fishpond developments (ha) 0 100
Protection from commercial firewood cutting by outsiders (ha) 0 1000

Artificial reef clusters (25 concrete modules each)
constructed and placed 60 44 55

Family oyster plots established 18 17 94
Family green mussel plots established 22 20 91

Illegal fishing largely controlled yes yes 100

Credit obtained by a FA 0 5

Training given
Small group 0 8
Individual "on the job" for Bohol
School of Fisheries students 0 5

Source: ACIPHIL 1992

Table 1.

Project Implementation and Impacts

Community organizations (fishermen's and farmers' associations) were set up in eleven
barangays--three more than were targeted (ACIPHIL 1992). Members held regular meetings whose
proceedings were recorded by the process documenter on the project staff.3 Each association was
headed by officials selected from among the members. Activities undertaken included most of the
tasks listed above for the Cogtong Bay Project. Most associations engaged in mangrove planting.
Stewardship certificates were issued to 250 members, primarily male heads of households. Oyster and
mussel cultivation were adopted only in places where this was a traditional activity and the
environment was suitable for it. Project targets for introducing mariculture were almost fully
achieved although only successful at one site. As shown in table 1, just over half the target for
artificial reef construction was accomplished.

Implementation of the mangrove rehabilitation and management component of the project was
delayed due to bureaucratic difficulties encountered in securing access to suitable mangrove areas.
Appropriate mangrove areas were apparently fully owned so project staff were compelled to afforest
new areas rather than rehabilitate old mangroves that had been deforested.4 The only available area
for planting was on mudflats that are not a particularly favorable environment for mangroves as they
are susceptible to being uprooted or destroyed by barnacles, oysters, and other crustaceans. Although
project staff attempted to take precautions to protect the mangrove propagules (seedlings) by raising
them in nurseries for six months, the complete success of these plantings was not assured. In fact,
project participants in Cawayanan reported that their plantings had not been successful.

The rehabilitation component of the project was finally undertaken in June 1991 when the
district government, under orders from the DENR in Manila, finally permitted this activity. But
instead of occurring on 400 ha, mangrove rehabilitation trials were started on 27 ha. The trial was
designed to test a management system which would re-establish an upper canopy of large trees while
allowing the continued use of small trees and saplings growing beneath the canopy for fuelwood and

3 The project employed eight to ten staff at various times, including a mariculturist, a mangrove
specialist, an artificial reef specialist, a process documenter, a site manager, two pump-boat
specialists, and a clerk.

4 Afforestation differs from rehabilitation in that new areas, usually not particularly favorable
to mangrove cultivation, are planted. Rehabilitation, on the other hand, must be done in areas where
mangroves were originally found but were depleted by overharvesting.

poles. The rehabilitation trial is significant in that it is the first attempt of its kind in the Philippines.
Previous efforts have been confined to mangrove reforestation.

Community organizations also undertook prevention of illegal fishing and construction of
illegal fishponds. Although prevention of illegal fishponds was not envisioned as one of the project
activities, some community associations decided the problem was serious enough that they wished to
tackle it. They succeeded in preventing the construction of 5 illegal fishponds that had the potential
to destroy 100 ha of existing mangroves in the project area. Illegal harvesting of mangroves for
commercial sale was also stopped in some places. Joint action by the community organizations and
project staff, including education, law enforcement, and the prohibition of sale of dynamited fish,
succeeded in controlling dynamite fishing within the project area. Illegal dynamite fishing has not,
however, been completely eliminated as fishermen just outside the project area continue the practice.
The municipality of Mabini has, therefore, established a regular marine patrol to guard the waters.

Another activity undertaken by the community associations not originally envisioned was
credit delivery. Through a program sponsored by the Department of Trade and Industries, 5
associations obtained loan funds that were made available to members.

In sum, by September 1991 the project had a major accomplishment to its credit, namely,
DENR recognition of guarantees for individual tenure rights over mangrove areas. Although the
DENR, through its Social Forestry Program, had been granting individuals tenure rights over forest
lands since 1981, this practice had not been instituted for mangrove areas until the implementation
of the Cogtong Bay Project (1991). The project received recognition by being made the prototype
for the DENR's forthcoming ADB-financed Mangrove Development Project (MDP) that was designed
to place 153,000 ha of existing mangroves throughout the Philippines under community management.
The project at Cogtong Bay was slated for expansion under the MDP. It was also designated as the
training site for NGO and DENR staff.

In August 1992, when the research for this case study was done, the ADB project had not
started. Some project activities were continuing: the community organizations seemed to be well-
established and were continuing to hold meetings, but the number and success of activities undertaken
by the organizations varied greatly. Just two of the eight members of the original staff were being
retained by the Network Foundation to continue the work. They had not, however, been paid in
several months, although they seemed very enthusiastic and were continuing to work on the project.

3. Objectives of the Case Study

The objectives of the case study were to examine the extent and nature of women's
involvement in the project and to identify ways to enhance women's participation in conservation and
resource management. Specifically, the objectives were:

1. To provide an overview of the project and an evaluation of the project's impact on
women's home and market roles that directly and indirectly affect conservation;

2. To document women's roles in managing natural resources and where their knowledge of
biological resources can be used to improve conservation;

3. To make recommendations as to how women's roles can be enhanced and more fully
integrated into the project;

4. To identify areas where short-term technical assistance and/or small amounts of seed
money would lead to women's greater participation in conservation or natural resource
management; and

5. To obtain information for formulating program and policy guidelines on involving women
in conservation and community development programs.

Until August 1992, no deliberate attempt had been made by project designers, donors, or
implementors to integrate women. A review of available project documents, including proposals to
various donors spanning a number of years (1988-92), project correspondence (1988-92), and a
terminal evaluation report, made no mention of women (The Network Foundation n.d. and 1992).
Preliminary conversations with Network Foundation staff and staff at the project site, however,
revealed that women had participated in the project but that it was difficult to determine to what
extent. The first step in the research, therefore, was to find out whether or not women were involved
in the project at all.

4. Methodology

The research for this study was done over a three-week period in 1992. In Cogtong Bay, the
study team visited 4 of the 13 project sites (2 sites were added after the termination of USAID
funding) Minol, Poblacion II, Cawayanan, and Cogtong. Socio-economic profiles of each community
except Cawayanan, for which data were not available, are provided in Annex 1. They are fairly
representative of the socioeconomic profile of the project area as a whole as described above.

A rapid rural appraisal (RRA) methodology was used to obtain the necessary information.
RRA is the term applied to various techniques used by social scientists for over a decade to obtain
data quickly and cost-effectively (Chambers 1985). By using RRA, it is possible to generate accurate
and reliable information in a short time without sacrificing the rigor associated with more detailed
long-term studies. Two important principles of the methodology are (1) to identify and emphasize
the most relevant variables on which information is to be sought and (2) to verify the accuracy of the
information obtained by cross-checking.

The data were obtained through semi-structured group interviews of women (and in some
cases of men) at each site. The women's groups consisted of those whose husbands may or may not
have been members of the community associations initiated by the project, though the meetings were
called by project staff. Although the team had asked specifically to meet women without men being
present, this proved to be impossible in practice.5 The team had also asked that the groups be kept
to a maximum of 10 individuals. That, too, proved to be impossible and each meeting was attended
by 25-35 people. Most attendees participated.

The team was concerned about having men present because it was felt that the women might
be reluctant to speak or that the men might take over the conversation. Fortunately, although at least
a few men were present either as bystanders or participants at every meeting, the women were quite
outspoken. In some cases, the men's presence provided interesting insights that could not have been
captured otherwise as, for example, when women and men offered contradictory responses to
questions and then attempted to explain their differences. Only one meeting was held exclusively
with men. Otherwise, information on men was obtained from those who were present at the meetings
with women.

5 The team requested this because they believed on the basis of evidence from other studies that
the women's responses might differ depending on whether or not men were present.

Group meetings were conducted in the local language as one of the team members spoke it.
She and project staff assisted with translation into English for the other team members. Most
respondents understood English (although they were reluctant to speak it) and most had at least a
primary education. A prepared questionnaire was administered as a group exercise at the meeting
(Annex 2). Individuals were asked to volunteer to provide information on the first question on daily
activities. Responses to the other questions were solicited from the whole group. Although certain
individuals tended to dominate initially, most women present participated in the dialogue and were
quite willing to contradict each other. The team noted the consensus answers and the objections.
Whenever women volunteered additional information, which the team urged them to do, this
information was used to supplement the questionnaire. What emerged as a result of the group
interviews was a composite picture. Such a technique has been used effectively in previous RRA by
Collinson (cited in Chambers).

The group meetings proved to be a good way to obtain a great deal of information in the
relatively short time available and had the added advantage of internal verification as group members
disputed points with each other. As Chambers (1985) points out, the group interview method is
particularly good for obtaining sensitive social information--in this case on the role of women.
Respondents seemed to be reinforced by having other women present to support them.

Additional verification and cross-checking of the answers obtained in the group sessions was
done by holding informal conversations with project staff who accompanied the team to each site and
who had the experience of working with the respondents over three years and living in the
communities. Informal conversations were also held with individual women and men outside the
group setting in each community. As the team stayed in Cogtong, there were some opportunities to
talk informally with people and to have a chance to observe women's daily life and work. The team
looked for consistencies in the data by comparing the information obtained from each of the four
communities and from project staff, plus what could be learned from the literature--longer-term
studies of women in other fishing communities with similar problems.

The team also had a group interview with the staff and individual interviews with key staff.
A questionnaire guided the initial interviews (Annex 3). However, the responses obtained from
project staff were quite inconsistent--whether on women's economic roles, on women's roles in
conservation and resource management, or on the extent and nature of their participation in the
project. To some extent, staff responses seemed to indicate that they had never thought about
women's roles separately from those of their husbands--even though half of the key staff were

women themselves. In this they seemed quite different from the women of the communities who,
although they initially portrayed themselves as "wives assisting their husbands," very quickly shifted
to describing their roles as individuals separate from their husbands.

Inconsistent responses by project staff may have reflected their belief that the case study was
actually an evaluation of the project's effectiveness in working with women and they wanted to put
their "best foot forward," so to speak, not knowing exactly what was expected of them. The follow-
up interviews with individual staff were therefore used to clarify some of the inconsistencies.

What follows is an account of women's roles in four communities of Cogtong Bay--their roles
in the local economies, in their households, and in resource use and management--and the nature and
extent of their participation in the Cogtong Bay Mangrove Management Project.

5. Women, Work, and Resource Use in Cogtong Bay

The limited, though growing, literature on women's roles in coastal communities in the
Philippines shows that although economic diversification is increasing their employment options,
women still depend mostly on natural resources to meet their economic and household needs
(UNESCAP 1985; Francisco and Israel 1991; Illo and Polo 1990; and Pomeroy 1985). In coastal
communities, fish and other marine products such as shellfish are the basis for subsistence and a
significant portion of cash income.

Although women commonly state that they merely assist their husbands in activities peripheral
to fishing, such as repairing nets and selling fish, they actually contribute substantially to fish
processing and marketing, and sometimes even catch fish (Francisco and Israel 1991; and Illo and Polo
1990). In Luciente, Western Luzon, for example, UNESCAP (1985) found some women directly
engaged in fishing. In Panacan, Palawan, the same study found equal numbers of women and men
involved in fish marketing. Women often regard their income as supplemental to that of their
husbands even if they actually earn more (Francisco and Israel 1991).

In most fishing communities women also engage in a number of other part-time, seasonal
income-earning activities, often in the informal sector, many of which are also resource dependent.
They may farm for themselves or as wage laborers, engage in retail trade (sari-sari stores), fish
processing, cottage industries such as nipa-weaving or mat-making, poultry and livestock-raising, and
domestic work and laundering (UNESCAP 1985; Francisco and Israel 1991; Illo and Polo 1990; and
Pomeroy 1985).

In Cogtong Bay, as in coastal communities throughout the Philippines, women's key roles in
the local economy and significant contributions to the support of their households involve extensive
use of local resources. Among the more important subsistence and income-generating activities which
involve women are fish and shellfish processing and marketing. The success of both activities
depends on the availability and quality of marine resources. Although fishing and firewood collection
are regarded as strictly male activities, one woman reported having done both. It is quite possible
that, when necessary, other women also fish and collect firewood. In fact, the team saw a young girl
fishing in a fish corral in the bay. Farming, another important subsistence and wage-earning activity
that employs women, depends on land and water availability--as do backyard gardening and livestock
rearing, in which women are also involved. In addition, women in Cogtong Bay work at a variety of

activities that do not directly involve use of natural resources, such as running sari-sari stores and
providing child care and laundry services.

Women's economic activities represent a mix of subsistence and income-earning endeavors.
Women tend to reserve a portion of the fish harvest for household consumption and sell the surplus.
Alternatively, if a harvest yields higher-valued fish, they may choose to sell it instead of consuming
it. Similar decisions are made with respect to other products, some of them being produced and
collected partially for household consumption and partially for sale. Other products are used as
inputs, for example cassava and ipil-ipil (a plant often found in household yards) which are used as
pig feed. Activities such as laundering for others, trading, or providing formal or informal day-care
services are undertaken purely for income.

Most women, in order to make ends meet, engage in a number of different activities
simultaneously and over their life cycles. One 48 year-old woman in Cogtong reported having
engaged in eight different economic activities during her lifetime: fishing, nipa weaving, snakeskin
trade, fish and oyster marketing, organizing a ripa, mariculture, and firewood collection.6 Notably,
all activities except one involved natural resources as inputs. Changes in activity patterns appeared
to be influenced by shifts in accessibility to natural resources. The woman abandoned nipa weaving,
for example, when local supplies of nipa declined. Other women also reported similar shifts in
individual and household employment patterns related to changes in resource availability. Quite
rationally, women seemed to shift from lower- to higher-return activities, subject to individual
constraints such as capital availability. Declining resource availability, especially lower fish catches,
appeared to be an important factor in seeking non-resource-based employment.

Contrary to what might be expected, women with many children seemed to be most involved
in economic activities and engaged in a variety of occupations. Thus, for example, one mother of six
children below age 12 and pregnant with a seventh child reported selling fish five times a week
(depending on whether her husband obtained it or not). Admittedly, it took her just an hour every
day to complete the sales. She also farmed a cassava plot, contributing to planting, weeding, and
harvesting even while pregnant; raised pigs; collected shells and travelled to Cebu (an overnight
journey) once a month to sell shells; tended fruit trees and assisted her husband in growing vegetables.
Interestingly, she had started in the shell trade before marrying, and after marriage continued the

6 A ripa is an informal savings association.

business with her husband's help. De Castro (1986) found that marital status and number of children
did not influence the number and type of economic activities that involve women in Panay, another
fishing community.

Having many children appears not to be a major constraint on economic activities because
there is generally a grandmother, other relative, or an older child who assumes responsibility for
caring for the younger children when the mother's economic activities take her away from the home.
There were examples, however, of women using other adaptation techniques to reconcile economic
with household responsibilities. Some women with children employed their mothers-in-law to sell
their fish, giving them a portion of the earnings as a small commission.

Women in Cogtong Bay are also the financial managers of their households. They keep the
purse and make the disbursements, often making decisions independently of their husbands. They
do, however, consult their husbands on the purchase of expensive items. Women are deeply
concerned with ensuring that there is adequate income to feed and educate their children, consistent
with other studies that show that women in other fishing communities (and in general) in the
Philippines are the primary financial managers of the household, responsible for budgeting money
for food, household goods, school fees, clothing, and other household needs (Pomeroy 1985; and
Tungpalan et al n.d.). Women are also responsible for managing savings. When families experience
cash shortages, seasonal or otherwise, women are expected to obtain supplementary income through
additional employment or by borrowing (Francisco and Israel 1991). Small loans are generally taken
by women, though men often share in the decision to borrow larger sums (Pomeroy 1985).

Women's knowledge of local marine and inland resources was quite extensive and thorough,
and they were at least as knowledgeable as men about both marine and inland resources. For example,
they named up to nine items obtained from the sea, including fish, oysters, mussels, clams, and sea-
crabs, and ten items obtained from the mangroves, including wood for use as poles and in house
construction, firewood, oysters, and mudcrabs. Many of these items, except oysters and shells, were
primarily obtained for direct consumption, although some were also sold. They mentioned that some
resources such as tamiloc (an edible substance obtained from the trunks of mangroves) were only
rarely used. Their knowledge of forest resources was also quite extensive although these were of less
interest to them because forests were more distant and the products are seldom used.

Women better understood the economic than the ecological value of natural resources. When
asked to rank the importance of resources, there was little hesitation in identifying the two most
important sea resources, namely fish and shells (oysters and other shellfish), which are the resources
of greatest economic value.7 In fact, that was often the order in which they listed the resources. One
group of women actually specified that their ranking reflected the price the resource fetched. Even
when women were not directly involved with the utilization of the resource in the sense that they did
not actually go out to fish or to collect shells, they were well aware of both the subsistence and the
cash value of the resource to the household.

When asked about resource depletion, women appeared more concerned about the restriction
or loss of an economic activity. They later went on, however, to make the connection between habitat
loss and decline in economic activity. They stated, for example, that their husbands' fish catch had
declined because dynamite fishing destroyed habitats, or shells were harder to collect because fish
ponds removed the mangroves. They mentioned the scarcity of tarsius monkeys which are valued for
bushmeat even though the monkey is found in the upland forest which they rarely visit.

7 Respondents appeared to use the term "shell" to denote oysters, mussels, cockles, and other

6. Project Implementation and Women's Involvement

Despite their resource use patterns, significant involvement in the economy, and participation
in association meetings, very few women were official members of the 13 associations that had been
organized by the Cogtong Bay Project. Nevertheless, women participated actively in project activities
such as mangrove afforestation, mariculture training, and installation of artificial reefs.

Association Membership and Attendance at Meetings

Association membership records showed virtually no women members. In Cogtong, a few
women who were either widowed or single reported being members in their own right. Of the four
sites visited, there was just one married woman who was a member in her own right and she had only
recently joined the organization. She had apparently obtained membership herself because her
husband, who was a policeman in the local community, had not wanted to join. Association officers
were primarily men, although some women functioned as officers. The Cogtong association, for
example, had a woman secretary.

Although women were rarely official members of the associations, they often attended
meetings. Even though association presidents informed only the men (as official members) about
scheduled meetings, women appeared to have no difficulty in obtaining this information. Project
staff corroborated women's own reports that they participated actively in association meetings, often
attending meetings as proxies for their husbands when the latter were unable to attend. The most
common reason given for men's absence from meetings was that they were out at sea. Women were
permitted to proxy for their husbands if they were ordinary members and officials of the association.
No proxy was allowed for the president. He was expected to be present at all meetings.

Project staff also reported that sometimes more women than men attended meetings. There
were times, for example, that two-thirds of the attendees in Cogtong were women. Women's
participation in association meetings could not, however, be verified by looking at attendance records
because staff informed us that, because they were attending as proxies for their husbands who were
the official members, they signed their husbands' names. Even when the majority of attendees were
women, meetings were conducted as if the actual members had been present, and the decisions taken
at such meetings were later upheld.

Both male and female respondents seemed to think that male membership implied family
membership in the association. Lack of official membership was not perceived as an impediment to
participation in project activities. Women were, however, concerned that lack of official membership
prevented them from obtaining access to loans in some of the associations, operating credit programs
financed through the Department of Trade and Industries.

Project Activities

Of the three main activities undertaken by the associations--afforestation of mangroves,
installation of artificial reefs, and mariculture (oysters or mussels, as appropriate for the site)-- some
women reported participating in one or all of the activities at all sites visited. However, their
participation varied by activity and project site. Women were most active in mangrove afforestation
and oyster culture and least active in establishing artificial reefs. Project staff reported that women
also participated in preventing illegal fishing by reporting any infringements they had seen.

Mangrove afforestation. Women reported participating most actively in mangrove
afforestation and rehabilitation. They were present both at meetings designed to inform them of the
Management Stewardship Certificates (MSCs) and how they worked as well as at training sessions
where they were taught how to plant mangrove propagules and the reasons for doing so. They also
participated in obtaining mangrove propagules (when these had to be cut and brought from a distant
location) and planting them in the designated areas. The work was performed on a voluntary basis.
Project staff reported that on some occasions more than two-thirds of participants in mangrove
activities were women. Once again, this could not be verified by the records, which showed few
women engaged in these activities (Table 2).

Women in Cogtong and Cawayanan, however, verified that they were the primary workers
in mangrove planting activities, having participated in both collecting propagules and planting them.
In Minol, the men obtained the propagules while the women did the planting.

The team was unable to clarify why women willingly participated in afforestation. A guess
is that they understood the benefits of planting mangroves, and more generally expected to benefit
from the project in some way in the future. They appeared not to distinguish between benefits to
themselves and the family unit. Rather, they regarded all activities as "family" enterprises where
family members supported each other.

Table 2. Percent Women Involved in Mangrove Rehabilitation, Cogtong Bay

Site Men Women % Women

Bonbon 23 3 11.5
Cawayanan* 30 0 0
Cogtong* 26 4 13.3
Lunsodaen 27 2 9.5
Marcelo 19 0 0
Minol* 17 2 11.0
Panas 16 0 0
Pangpang 20 4 16.6
Poblacion I 26 3 11.0
Poblacion II* 22 1 4.3
Sagumay Daku 20 2 9.1
Tombo 24 6 20.0

* Sites visited

Source: ACIPHIL (1992)

Women did not benefit from the security of tenure granted under this project. Very few of
them obtained the MSCs which were made out in the men's names, regardless of who had actually
done the work of planting propagules. In Minol, for example, just three of 18 MSC recipients were
women. Two of them were widows and one woman inherited her MSC from her husband who had
left the area. In Cawayanan, the MSCs were held exclusively by men The lone female member of
the association did not have a MSC. However, this may have been because she had only recently
joined the association just six months before this study was done.

Mariculture. Project staff introduced mariculture in a three-day on-site training at three of
the four sites visited (Table 3). Mussel culture failed in Minol but oyster culture was quite successful
in Cogtong. The project introduced a simple technology for stringing together discarded oyster shells
or coconut shells and introducing these "collectors" into the mudflats by hanging them on stakes
planted in brackish or salt water. Oyster spats attach to the collectors and can be harvested in about
eight months. The tasks involved in mariculture included stringing discarded oyster shells to make

collectors, installing stakes in the likely breeding grounds in the bay, hanging collectors on stakes,
preventing theft of collectors, and harvesting. Installing stakes required diving into shallow waters
to make sure the stakes were secure in the marsh bottom. Hanging collectors and harvesting were
usually scheduled for low tide to avoid having to dive under water. Still, both activities required
wading in shallow muddy waters--a difficult and potentially dangerous task.

Official records once again showed that few women participated in this activity but project
staff reported about 60 percent of mariculture trainees in Cogtong were women. Women in Cogtong
reported that they undertook mariculture as a joint enterprise with their husbands who did the more
difficult work of installing the stakes and assisting with hanging collectors. Women strung the
collectors together, assisted with installing stakes, helped police the waters, and did much of the
harvesting. They also processed and sold the oysters produced.

Table 3. Percent Women Involved in Mariculture, Cogtong Bay

Site Men Women % Women

Cawayanan (mussels)* 28 0 0
Cogtong (mussels & Oysters)* 11 2 15.0
Minol (mussels)* 19 2 9.5
No mariculture in Poblacion II*

* Sites visited

Source: ACIPHIL (1992)

Artificial reef installation. The artificial reefs were L-shaped concrete structures that
represented an advance over the less permanent box more commonly used bamboo structures.
However, being much heavier, they were more difficult to install. The work, done communally,
entailed loading the reefs onto boats and then dropping them into the bay from the boat at the
designated site. This was regarded as men's work. The women felt they were assisting because they
provided moral support and cooked community meals on the days men installed the reefs.

7. Potential for Enhancing Women's Roles

Women's understanding of the project and its goals seemed to be the best in Cogtong where
the project was headquartered. Women there were better able to explain the problems and causes of
resource depletion than elsewhere. That women in Cogtong had received technical help in
establishing income-generating activities (oyster culture) probably helped to enhance women's
awareness. This was in sharp contrast to Poblacion II, the last barangay to be contacted, where the
community appeared to be much less involved in the project. There the women, especially, appeared
to be less conscious of the project, its goals, and the need for better resource management.

At all visited sites women were quite clear about their own needs and the issues affecting their
communities. They stated that their most critical problem was poverty, especially the lack of income
for purchasing adequate food supplies and providing for their children's education. They were also
quite clear that a shortage of capital was the main constraint impeding their economic advancement
and that if they had credit they would be able to undertake or expand ongoing income-generating
activities. Many women (both project participants and non-participants) had definite ideas about the
kinds of income-generating activities they could operate. These included enterprises such as pig-
raising and peanut-butter processing. When asked if they knew how to run a credit scheme, some
appeared quite confident that they could, while others reported that they could do so if they were
given a little training. A number of women asked specific questions about what interest rates and
collateral might be if a credit scheme was introduced. (One woman jokingly suggested that she would
be willing to offer her husband as collateral!)

In fact, we later discovered that a number of women in Cawayanan and Cogtong had run
ripas, the informal savings associations.8 A ripa can be either commodity or cash-based. It is usually
initiated by a woman who acts as the sponsor and the bank, and participants are also usually women.
In Cogtong there were 3 commodity ripas and one cash ripa that was not faring very well. Sponsors
and participants were all women.

Women were directly asked about the ripa in only two communities. A more general question
put to the communities earlier about belonging to informal associations did not elicit a response about
the ripa. A follow-up question in Cogtong indicated that there were actually four ripas even though
the women had not earlier thought that this activity could be regarded as an association. It is quite
possible that all four communities actually had ripas but did not view them as associations that might
be of interest to the researchers.

Another noteworthy feature among the women interviewed was the sense of initiative and
entrepreneurship that they demonstrated. They talked about the economic and other problems they
faced and about the actions they had taken to overcome these difficulties. They seemed willing to
do whatever was necessary to contribute to household support. As one activity became impossible,
due to shortages, such as in the case of nipa weaving, women turned to other alternatives to obtain
income. They seemed to be prepared to develop their own mechanisms to tackle their problems by
running a ripa, or borrowing from friends and relatives.

Altogether they appeared, as individuals, to be able to adapt to changing economic and
environmental conditions.

In Minol, a group of women belonged to a Rural Improvement Club (RIC) organized by the
Department of Agriculture (DA) designed as a counterpart to the fishermen's association. The
objective of the club is to train and educate women "to help their husbands earn a livelihood." In
Minol, where the club had been in existence for one year, there were 28 active members. On land
rented by the club, the participants grew peanuts which they planned to process into peanut butter
for sale in local markets. They were also planning to join with the fishermen's association to set up
a multipurpose cooperative, mainly to be able to have access to credit.

It was evident that women were very clear about their economic and other needs and eager
to participate in projects that addressed their problems. In fact, most group discussions and
individual sessions ended with inquiries about what we could do to assist them in enhancing their

8. Conclusions, Recommendations, and Lessons Learned

Women in Cogtong Bay are key economic participants and contributors to the economic
support of their households. Because they depend both directly and indirectly upon natural resources
to meet their economic needs, they are concerned about the depletion of resources. They appeared,
however, to better understand the economic rather than the ecological value of natural resources.
They were more aware of resource depletion if it had an impact on them economically, that is, if the
resource in question was used for consumption or sale.

Without any deliberate planning on the part of project designers or staff, women became
actively involved in the associations, presumably because they were accustomed to being active in the-
social and economic life of the community as their husbands' "helpers" and could see the value of
resource management in terms of their current and future livelihoods, being well aware that they were
dependent on these resources for survival and income. Thus, without actually acquiring membership
in the fishermen's associations, women attended meetings, became officers, made decisions, and
undertook association (project) activities. They were most active in providing voluntary labor for
mangrove rehabilitation and afforestation and, in Cogtong, in adopting mariculture techniques
demonstrated by project staff.

Women were effectively excluded from project benefits such as tenure over mangrove areas,
membership in associations, and credit. It had not occurred to them to become community association
members in their own right but, when asked if they would like to do so, the universal response was
affirmative. Moreover, they knew exactly why they wanted to be members--to have access to
resources such as the credit available to the male members through the associations. They were also
eager to obtain MSCs in their own names because land ownership provided them with collateral that
could be used to obtain credit.

Project Recommendations

Two of the objectives of the case study, as noted above, were to make recommendations (1)
about how women could be more fully integrated into the project and (2) to identify areas where
short-term technical assistance or small amounts of seed money would lead to women's greater
participation in resource management based on the case study research. Recommendations for
integrating women into the project are:

Project staff should reinforce women's participation at sites where they are already active
by inviting them to become full-fledged members of the associations on their own, so
they can have full access to available benefits. At other locations, women should be
actively recruited as members of the associations. They should also be assured access to
leadership positions within the associations. Alternatively, interested women should be
given assistance to form their own associations.

Women who have proved themselves capable of undertaking mangrove afforestation, as
many have already done, should be given secure tenure over mangrove plots by being
awarded MSCs. In the future, women should have equal access to MSCs.

As women have proven themselves capable of engaging in mariculture, there is potential
for expanding this activity to involve women at other sites, taking care to ensure that the
physical conditions are appropriate and that women are provided the proper technical and
financial support to make the project workable. This would serve both resource
management and economic goals.

Project staff should be given training in various aspects of women in development
(WID)--the importance of WID, gender sensitivity, and practical ways to implement WID.
Some project staff, by participating in this study and through attendance at a workshop
associated with it, have already made some progress; this momentum should be built

Additional recommendations can be made pertaining to a recent proposal made by the
Network Foundation to the Foundation for Philippine Environment for expanding the project
(Network Foundation 1992). Proposed activities include conducting a user survey, regenerating
brackish water seaweed, a mud crab and mangrove harvest study, and introducing of credit and nipa
agreements. Each of these activities can be slightly modified to better integrate women and to
enhance their participation in the project. Following are some recommendations:

The proposed user survey should obtain information disaggregated by gender. Technical
assistance should be obtained to determine what types of data are needed on women and
how best to obtain it.

Proposed activities, such as regenerating of brackish water seaweed, should be
undertaken with full understanding of the respective roles of women and men in the use
and management of the resources. Appropriate measures should be taken to ensure the
full participation of women.

The proposed mud crab and mangrove clam harvest study should fully consider the
respective roles of women and men, including their respective specializations in
production and marketing. Improved management techniques should be developed and
introduced that take full account of the respective roles and skills of both women and

Women should have equal access to the proposed credit for maintaining aquaculture of
oysters and mussels. If there are special constraints that women experience, such as legal
restrictions or lack of information, etc., special efforts should be made to overcome those

If the proposed nipa agreements are introduced, they should be made available to both
women and men and the constraints to women's access should be identified and

The noteworthy feature of these recommendations is that they require fairly small, though
significant, changes in project implementation--and no new resources. It is very important, however,
to note that at the time this study was done, project activities had been suspended for several months.
Most of the staff had been let go, the rest of the staff had not been paid, and no resources were
available to continue project activities. While the community associations were functioning, they, too,
did not appear to have adequate financial resources to continue their activities. Unless funds are
made available on a regular basis it is unrealistic to expect project activities to continue in an area so
poor in resources. Recommendations pertaining to the better integration of women are similarly
dependent on the availability of funding and are closely tied to the overall success of the project.

If additional funding such as seed money becomes available that can be earmarked for women,
considerable potential exists within the community to use it productively in one or more activities that
combine resource management with income generation. Even without receiving direct benefits,
women in Cogtong Bay, demonstrated through this project their commitment to resource conservation

and management. They would be just as willing, if not more so, to pursue such activities if they were
combined with opportunities for income generation. A key element of the success of a number of
conservation efforts in other places has been to combine them with economic development (Mehra
1992). Such a strategy would be appropriate for the women of Cogtong Bay. Therefore,
recommendations are as follows:

One strategy would be to use the infrastructure of the Cogtong Bay Project that already
exists and modify it to better achieve resource management goals, integrate women by
making them full members of the associations, and offer credit and technical assistance
to women for group or individual income-generating enterprises. Obviously, this would
require continuing financial and technical support for the Cogtong Bay Project.

Alternatively, a separate project could be devised for women that combines credit for
enterprises with resource management. Credit could be used as an incentive to promote
resource management and could be made available through a women's association. (In
fact, since the research for this study was done, a group of about thirty women from
Cawayanan wrote to inform us that they have recently formed an association of their
own.) If a credit scheme is implemented it will be necessary to provide technical
assistance in areas such as financial management, enterprise development, the conduct
of feasibility studies, and others, to ensure that the women have the support they need
to make the project work.

Lessons Learned

A few simple but useful lessons can be learned from this case study about women's
involvement in conservation and development projects these lessons provide useful insights for future
policies and programs.

Ignoring women's roles in project design and implementation can result in significant
missed opportunities. There may be considerable potential for involving women in
conservation and development projects, but a conscious effort must be made at the start
of a project to identify their roles, responsibilities, and needs. In Cogtong Bay, despite
the fact that women were ignored in project design and implementation, they volunteered
to become involved because they thought that benefits might accrue to the household.
It is to the credit of project staff that they worked with whoever (women and men) made

It is to the credit of project staff that they worked with whoever (women and men) made
themselves available for association meetings and activities: Women in other communities
may not be as willing to come forward without the conscious effort of those who design
and implement the projects.

* The views and interests of all stakeholder groups, especially including women, should be
sought in the design and implementation of projects. Had this been done in Cogtong
Bay, project designers may have discovered early on that many women were discouraged
about the community's ability to prevent illegal fishing and wanted access to other ways
of improving their incomes that did not rely on coastal resources. This would have
alerted project staff to the need for identifying and supporting income-generation
projects that would provide short-term returns while the community members worked
in the longer term on resource management problems .

* Linking resource-management efforts to income-enhancing activities that yield short-
term demonstrable results allows women's economic needs to be met while longer term
goals such as educating them about the need for conservation and resource management
are pursued.

* Women, like men, need direct access to resources and control over them to achieve
project goals. It was not clear whether male ownership of MSCs provided women with
the desired incentives for proper management of coastal mangrove plots.

* Women also need direct access to resources and control over them to benefit fully from
project interventions. In Cogtong Bay, women required full membership in the
community associations and ownership of mangrove stewardship certificates in order to
have equal access to the credit needed to enhance their productivity and incomes.


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Socio-Economic Profiles of Three
Barangays Participating in the Cogtong Bay
Mangrove Management Project

Cogtong, with a total population of 2158, evenly divided between men and women, is the
largest of the four communities. It is the site of the project's office and became the base of
operations for the case study team. Cogtong has better infrastructure and amenities than the other
sites, including gravel roads, a water system, electricity, a post office, a health center with a midwife,
two churches, and a variety of sports fields.9 An elementary school and the Bohol School of Fisheries
are also located in Cogtong. Fishing is the main occupation and small fishermen comprise the
majority of the population. Community organizations include the Cogtong Young Generation
Association (CYGA), and the Parent-Teachers Association (PTA). The fishermen's association was
registered in September 1989. The two main resource problems are the use of illegal and destructive
fishing gears and indiscriminate cutting of mangroves.

Poblacion II is mainly an agricultural and fishing community of 1,345 people, just over half
of whom are women. Its main resources are fish and firewood. Rice is produced. Illegal fishing has
depleted neighboring marine resources while the construction of big fishponds has damaged the
mangrove areas. Only a small mangrove area remains that is suitable for rehabilitation. There is a
local elementary school, municipal water system, electricity, a Catholic church, and radio. Apart
from the community association organized by project staff and registered in January 1991, there is
a Parent-Teacher Association. Activities under the Cogtong Bay Project include organization of a
law enforcement group and implementation of mangrove rehabilitation.

Fishing and farming are also the main sources of livelihood in Minol. It is accessible by a
gravel-surfaced road from the town of Mabini and other neighboring barangays. The total population
is 867, with males (417) slightly outnumbering females (383). The main economic outputs are fish,
rice, and corn. Mangroves provide firewood. Available amenities consist of an elementary school,
dug wells, electricity, a Catholic Church and a basketball court. Its main resource management
problems include depleted marine resources, and lack of appropriate technology in rehabilitating
marine and upland resources. The Minol fishermen's association was registered in March 1990.

Socio-economic data on the Cawayanan community were not available. The Association was
established in 1989 and registered in March 1990 with 47 members.

9 Data on the project sites was obtained from project files in Cogtong.


Cogtong Bay Project
Participant Questionnaire

Economic/Resource Use Activity Profile

1. Please tell us about your activities during the day (yesterday), from the time you woke up to
the time you went to bed. Include activities outside the house such as nipa weaving, collecting shells,
etc. List the activities by the hour.

Time Activity

2. Was yesterday a typical day for you? If not, what other activities do you do on other days?

3. Are there other seasons or times of year when your daily activities would be different? What
activities would you do then that you did not mention in the list?

4. What other sources of income do you have?

5. Who does the activities to obtain the income?

6. What do you do to help your husband in his activities?

Use of Natural Resources

7. What do you get for your families use from the following:

The sea:

The mangroves:

The forest:

Your back yard:

8. Do you sell these? Which of these do you sell?

9. Who in the family (husband, wife, children) participates in obtaining the commodities listed?

10. Which of these resources do you consider the most important?

11. Do you think there is sufficient supply of these resources? Which are adequate in supply and
which are not?

Needs Assessment

12. What are the main problems facing your family?

13. How long have you been experiencing the problemss?

14. What do you do to cope with the problemss?

15. What are the main problems facing your community?

16. How long have you been experiencing the problemss?

17. What do you do to cope with the problemss?

18. What are the main problems you face? INTERVIEWER: If the responses do not differ from
those listed in the question on family, omit the next 2 questions.

19. How long have you been experiencing the problemss?

20. What do you do to cope with the problem?

Expenditures, Savings, and Loan Profile

21. What are your main expenses?

22. Who decides how much to spend on a day-to-day basis on these main expenses?

23. Who makes the purchases?

24. When you want to make a special purchase (e.g. fishing gear, furniture), who makes the

25. When you are hard up who do you go to first?

26. Is it relatively easy to obtain loans?

27. Who decides in the family when to borrow and who to borrow from?

28. What do you generally use loans for?

29. Who in the family is responsible for paying back the loan?

30. Do you ever save money?

31. What do you use the savings for?

32. Do you belong to a paluagan (emergency fund association)?

33. If so, tell us more about the paluagan and how it works.

Community Participation

34. Do you belong to an association? INTERVIEWER: If the response is that they belong to a
project-related association, then ask what other associations they belong to.

35. How long has the association existed?

36. Who started the association?

37. How many members does it have?

38. What is your role in the association?

39. What does the association do?

40. Are there other things you would like to see the association do?

41. Who are the leaders of the association?

42. If you do not belong to an association, why not?

Resource Management

INTERVIEWER: If resource depletion issues were cited in the problems discussed, follow
up here by referring back to these issues. Otherwise, raise the issue.

43. Are you experiencing difficulties in obtaining resources? Give examples.

44. What do you think is the reason for this?

45. Have you tried to solve the problemss?

46. Has the project helped to solve the problems(s)? How?

47. Have you participated in the project? How have you participated?

48. Could you suggest some other ways to solve the resource problemss?


Cogtong Bay Project
Questionnaire for Project Staff


1. What are your main responsibilities in the project?

2. How long have you worked on the project?

3. What are the major accomplishments of the project in your view?

4. What are your personal accomplishments?

Baseline Data

Please give us some information about the people and resources at the project site. We have
a list of questions:

5. Fisherfolk comprise just 15 percent of households. Is the project only working with fisherfolk
in the communities? Or also working with others?

6. What percentage of households engage in agriculture? Would they also be involved in using
coastal resources? To what extent?

7. Who harvests mud crab and mangrove clam? What technologies are available? To whom are
the technologies introduced?


Is aquaculture--oyster and mussel culture--a traditional activity in the community? Who does

9. What activities have you observed women doing to earn income or help their families survive
(e.g. collecting clams or mussels, fetching water, etc.)?

10. What activities have you seen women doing to help their husbands earn income?

11. What activities have you observed women doing that have an impact on natural resources or
relate to resource use?


12. Which project activities are women most actively involved in?

13. Which project activities are women least involved in? Why?

14. Are women included in the following project activities? INTERVIEWER: DO NOT ASK
DIRECTLY. Check off appropriate responses and only ask directly about those not mentioned by
the interviewee.

Major elements (checklist):

Organization/building associations


--stewardship agreements
--assisted wilderness regeneration
--rehabilitation of existing forest
--replanting of illegally cleared fishpond
--prevention of illegal fishpond development
--protection of commercial firewood cutting

Artificial reefs:



--green mussels

Control of illegal fishing


Small group training

Implementation (continued)

15. What are the membership rules in fishermen' associations? Are women allowed to be

16. Are women allowed to hold official positions?

17. Who inherits traditional nipa rights?

18. What kinds of training does the project give?

19. How often is the training given?

20. How do you select participants in the training?

21. How many women have participated in the training?

22. What project activities do you think would be enhanced by women's participation?

23. What are your major frustrations in the project?


24. Are you familiar with the proposal for extending the project? INTERVIEWER: If yes,
continue. If not, stop here.

25. In the user survey proposed in the next extension what data will you be obtaining?

26. How will you ensure that the data will be disaggregated by gender?

27. Raft culture is being proposed to regenerate Gracilaria (brackish water seaweed). Who
currently harvests this--men, women, or children?

28. Mud crab and mangrove clam harvest study is being proposed as a way to introduce
management techniques. How will the techniques be communicated to the users? How will women
have access to the management techniques?

29. Credit is being proposed for maintaining aquaculture of oysters and mussels. Who will receive
credit? Will women have access to credit for their activities?

30. Will nipa agreements be different from stewardship agreements?

31. Who will receive nipa agreements? The same families who received stewardship agreements?


List of People Contacted

Carol Afionuevo
Center for Women's Resources
University of the Philippines
Quezon City

Raul V. Arambuo
Director of Pangil Bay Project
Coastal Resource Management Specialist

Isabelita V. Austria
Senior Forest Management Specialist
Social Forestry Division
(Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)
Quezon City

Reynaldo C. Bayabos
Deputy National Project Director
UNDP-FAO-DENR Integrated Social Forestry Project
Quezon City

Ana Marie C. Cabigas
Training Coordinator
CVRP-I and Network Foundation
Mandaue City, Cebu

Lidinila N. Concepcion
Development Management Officer IV
IEC Unit, Office of the Under-Secretary for Environment and Research
Mandaue City, Cebu

Gladys Hinglo
Social Research Sector Head
Women's Research and Resource Center, Inc.

Lorna Q. Israel
Research Development Program Officer
Women's Research & Resource Center, Inc.

Verse Logarta

Lourdes Ja. Martines-Flores
Information Officer IV
Quezon City

Pedro R. Milana Jr.
Agricultural Technologist
Department of Agriculture
Mabini, Bohol

Alice Morada
LIHOK (Pilipina Movement, Inc.)
Mandaue City, Cebu

Belinda Navascuez
The Network Foundation
Mandaue City, Cebu

Christi Nozawa
Executive Director
Haribon Foundation

Cristina B. Paulino
Development Management Officer IV

Becky A. Rivera
Research Program Coordinator
Tambuyog Development Center

Corazon Siliman
Congress for People's Agrarian Reform

Carolyn I. Sobritchea
Coordinator for Training and Outreach
Center for Women's Studies
University of the Philippines
Quezon City

Purita A. Tabanao
Board Secretary
The Network Foundation, Inc.
Mandaue City, Cebu

Juliet U. Texon
Project Development & Evaluation Division

Brownie Villavicencio
Program Director
Foundation for the Philippines Environment

Lourdes C. Wagan
Senior Forest Management Specialist
Social Forestry Division

Frederick J. Vande Vusse
Program Development Consultant


Training Materials from a Workshop
Held in Mandaue City, Cebu, August 27, 1992

Workshop Session 1

Who Does What? Or How to
Distinguish Household and Economic Activities

Objectives: 1.

Recognize that women are active participants in the economy; and

2. Explore the use of a simple tool to obtain data on women's economic
roles, including how to avoid the pitfalls involved in using the tool.

Methods: Small working groups


1.5 Hours

Materials: Handouts (Activity 1 & Activity 2); pens; newsprints; pentel pens.

Workshop Session 1

Who Does What? Or How to
Distinguish Household and Economic Activities

Activity 1

The following is a list of activities done during an August day by two members of a
fishing community in Bohol:

Wake up; cook breakfast; look for bait; salt oysters; feed animals; collect oysters;
cook lunch; wash oyster meat; sell fish; sell oysters; replant oyster poles; cook dinner;
fish; attend charismatic meeting; attend prayer meeting; cook supper.

1. Enter the activities listed above in the appropriate columns provided below. Each
activity should be listed only once. (The economic activities may include subsistence and
income-earning activities.)




2. Enter in the appropriate columns below the tasks you expect would be done by a
man and those that would be done by a woman. You may use any item on the list more
than once if you like.

Workshop Session 1



Who Does What? Or How to
Distinguish Household and Economic Activities

Integration of Activity 1

1. We show them the real lists of activities (Key Activity). (There is considerable
overlap of activities between women and men.)

2. Obtain participant responses on the lists:

Is it what they expected?
If so, why?
If not, why not?

3. The key points that the participants should realize are as follows:

Some of the traditionally female tasks such as cooking are being done by the
The woman is doing many tasks that are purely economic, some are subsistence
activities and others will yield income. In fact, the woman'S economic activities
are more diverse than those of the man, at least in this case.

Key points to note:

Economic activities include production/processing/marketing and subsistence/paid
work. Theoretically, household activities, if paid, include economic activities; they also have
an impact on the use of natural resources.

Workshop Session 1

Who Does What? Or How to
Distinguish Household and Economic Activities

Key to Activity 1

Juliana's Daily Activities

Time Activity

4:00-4:30 a.m
4:30-5:00 a.m.
5:00-5:30 a.m.

5:30-6:00 a.m.
6:00-11:00 a.m.

11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
12:00-12:30 p.m.
12:30-4:00 p.m.
4:00-5:00 p.m.
5:00-6:00 p.m.
6:00-7:00 p.m.
7:00-11:00 p.m.

Salt oysters (process for sale)
(15 bottle in 1/2 hr)
Feed animals (pigs)
Collect/harvest "shells"
(tide dependent)

Remove oyster meat
Wash meat
Feed animals
Prepare supper and eat
Prayer meeting

Key to Activity 1 (continued)

Andres' Daily Activities


4:00 a.m.
4:00-4:30 a.m.
4:30-5:00 a.m.
5:00-5:20 a.m.
5:20-6:00 a.m.
6:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
1:00-2:00 p.m.
2:00-4:00 p.m.
4:00-5:00 p.m.
5:00-5:30 p.m.
5:30-6:00 p.m.
6:00-11:00 p.m.
11:00-4:00 p.m.

Wake up
Cook breakfast/read bible
Look for bait
Travel to fishing site
Travel for home
Sell fish
Cook for dinner
Attend charismatic activities


Workshop Session 1

Who Does What? Or How to
Distinguish Household and Economic Activities

Activity 2

Attached are two lists representing the types of activities done during the day by
members of a fishing community in Bohol.

1. For both List A and List B, identify the type of activity in each case, whether
household (H), economic (subsistence or income-earning) (E), or community (C).

2. For each of List A and List B, state whether you think it represents a man's or
woman's activities.




4:00-6:00 a.m.
6:00-7:00 a.m.
7:00-7:30 a.m.
7:30-10:00 a.m.
10:00-11:00 a.m.
12:00-12:30 a.m.
12:30-1:00 p.m.
1:00-4:00 p.m.
4:00-5:00 p.m.
5:00-6:00 p.m.
6:00-7:00 p.m.
9:00-12:00 p.m.
12:00 midnight

Wake up and cook food
Prepare breakfast
Prepare children for school
Care for small children
Prepare lunch
Eat lunch
Care for children
Prepare supper
Eat supper
Help children with homework
Prepare fish for sale

Workshop Session 1

Who Does What? Or How to
Distinguish Household and Economic Activities

Activity 2 (continued)



5:00-6:00 a.m.
6:00-7:30 a.m.
7:30-9:00 a.m.
9:00-10:00 a.m.
10:00-11:30 a.m.
11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
12:30-1:00 p.m.
1:00-4:00 p.m.
4:00-5:00 p.m.
5:00-6:00 p.m.
6:00-6:30 p.m.
6:30-7:00 p.m.
7:00 p.m.

Wake up and cook food
Prepare feed and feed pigs
Sell fish house-to-house
Shell oyster meat
Salt and process oysters
Cook lunch
Eat lunch
Weed cassava plot
Prepare supper
Eat supper
Prepare to go to Cebu
Travel to Cebu to sell shells


Workshop Session 1

Who Does What? Or How to
Distinguish Household and Economic Activities

Integration of Activity 2

1. We disclose that the activities in both lists are done by one woman. When asked to
fill out the list of daily activities done yesterday she produced List A. Only on closer
questioning did she reveal the activities in List B which is really a composite of some of the
other activities she mentioned.

2. Participants should be asked the following question:

SWhy do you think the woman at first mentioned only the activities listed in List
A? Give as many reasons as you can think of.

(Responses should include: yesterday that is all she did; sees household tasks as the
only appropriate ones to mention; some of the tasks are periodic, seasonal, or dependent
on tide conditions; she felt constrained to talk openly because men were present, etc.)

We explain that the daily activity list is often used as a device to obtain information
about women's roles in the economy and the household. It is a good device but has to be
used carefully to actually yield the information needed:

Better still are methods that obtain the information for several
Activity lists that women can fill out on a daily basis so they do not have to rely
on recall; and
Even better is direct field observation of tasks for an extended period of time
filled out by the researcher.

3. Once again, the key points to note in Activity 2 are:

The woman mentioned at first only the household tasks. She identified herself
as just a housewife.

The activities in List B include many economic activities that contribute to the
subsistence or income of the household. In fact, the woman is a key contributor
to household subsistence and income.

The woman is engaging in a number of diverse activities to make ends meet.

Participants should be asked:

Based on what you have just found out about women's economic roles, are there
implications for development planning?

If so, what are the implications?

Workshop Session 2
Who Knows What About Coastal Resources?

Objectives: 1) Obtain an understanding of women's and men's knowledge of the
status of natural resources in their communities.

2) Have an opportunity to compare women's and men's level of
knowledge and understanding of natural resources.

Method: Small workshop groups

Time: 1.25 hours

Materials: Questionnaire; pens; newsprint; pentel pens.

Procedures: 1) The main activity is for project participants to respond to a
questionnaire. To do so,

a) they will be divided into two groups--an all-male group and an
all-female group

b) non-participants in the project will ask questions (from the

c) project staff will be cautioned not to prompt the respondents.

2) In each group, a designated person will note responses on newsprint
to be shared when the two groups get together.

3) After all questions are answered, the groups will get together and
compare responses.

4) If non-respondents observe differences, they can ask respondents to
clarify and explain why they do or do not know as much as

5) A person will be designated to take notes.

1. Right now, do you consider FISH to be:

Very, very rare

2. Right now, do you consider OYSTERS to be:

Very, very rare

3. Right now, do you consider MUSSELS to be:

Very, very rare

4. Right now, do you consider PRAWNS/SHRIMPS to be:

Very, very rare

5. Right now, do you consider MUD CRABS to be:

Very, very rare

6. Right now, do you consider NIPA to be:

Very, very rare

7. Right now, do you consider BAKA WAN/KATSA W to be:

Very, very rare

8. Right now, do you consider EGRETS to be:

Very, very rare

9. Right now, do you consider HERONS to be:

Very, very rare

10. Right now, do you consider KINGFISHERS to be:

Very, very rare

11. Right now, do you consider SEA SNAKES to be:

Very, very rare

12. Right now, do you consider BURI to be:

Very, very rare

13. Right now, do you consider ROMBLON to be:

Very, very rare

14. Right now, do you consider TAMILOC to be:

Very, very rare

15. Right now, do you consider SEA CUCUMBER to be:

Very, very rare

16. Right now, do you consider GUSO to be:

Very, very rare

17. How many different types of SHELLS can you name?

18. How many different types of FISH can you name?


19. Do you collect FISH?

20. How far from you house do you collect fish?

21. Is that the best place to collect fish?

22. Which do you leave behind and why?

23. Is there some time in the year when you don't collect fish? Why?

24. When is the best time of the year to collect fish?

25. When is the worst time of the year to collect fish? Why?

26. Do you know of ways to ensure a bigger harvest of fish?


27. Do you collect SHELLS? Why?

28. How far from you house do you collect shells?

29. Is that the best place to collect shells?

30. Which do you leave behind and why?

31. Is there some time in the year when you don't collect shells? Why?

32. When is the best time of the year to collect shells?

33. When is the worst time of the year to collect shells? Why?

34. Do you know of ways to ensure a bigger harvest of shells?



35. Do you collect CRABS?

36. How far from you house do you collect crabs?

37. Is that the best place to collect crabs?

38. Which do you leave behind and why?

39. Is there some time in the year when you don't collect crabs? Why?

40. When is the best time of the year to collect crabs?

41. When is the worst time of the year to collect crabs? Why?

42. Do you know of ways to ensure a bigger harvest of crabs?


43. Do you harvest NIPA?

44. How far from you house do you harvest nipa?

45. How soon can you go back to harvest from the same nipa stand?

46. How can you be sure that the nipa will grow back?


Do you collect firewood in the mangroves?

How far from your house do you have to go to get firewood?

How soon can you go back to the same spot to obtain firewood?

Is there any way to ensure that the mangrove will grow back?

Which are the best mangroves to use for firewood? for fish straps? for fencing? for houses?


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