Filipinos eat a lot of canned sardines – about half a billion cans of sardines each year.But what many Filipinos do not know is that around 90% of these canned sardines are made with “tamban” harvested in the seas surrounding Zamboanga Peninsula, the Sulu Celebes Sea. Of the dozen or so canned sardine factories in the country, ten are in Zamboanga City.
Recent studies have shown that the sardine stock in the Sulu Celebes Sea is under threat of collapse. Overfishing is an important factor but there are many other causes. These include pollution and climate change.The National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (NFRDI), an agency of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resource (BFAR), is engaged in a multi-country project to improve the condition of fisheries and their habitats in the Sulu-Celebes Sea. The project is called the Sulu-Celebes Sea Sustainable Fisheries Management Project and is done in partnership with Malaysia and Indonesia.
Last year, NFRDI partnered with the Department of Communication of Ateneo de Zamboanga University to create Lana Sardinas, an information campaign to promote greater awareness about the importance of protecting the Sulu Celebes Sea.The campaign will be launched on the evening of Friday, March 14 at the Orchid Ballroom of Garden Orchid Hotel.
The flagship activities of the campaign include a musical puppet show and a storybook. Both are about a young sardine forced to cope with changes in her environment brought about by man-made and natural disasters. Another campaign material is an animated video intended as a call to action.Yen Blanco-Delgado, chair of the Department of Communication of ADZU and head of the Lana Sardinas Information Campaign project said that the information drive was designed to get the public interested in the condition of the Sulu Celebes Sea and propel them to action to help protect it.
“A lot of people don’t realize just how valuable the Sulu-Celebes Sea is to our lives, not just economically but also socially and culturally. If the sardines disappear from the Sulu Celebes Sea, there’ll be no more canned sardines, no more bulad, and most drastically, no more jobs for over 30, 000 workers dependent on sardines for their livelihood.”The puppet show and storybook will be shown in various high schools all over Zamboanga Peninsula. The animated video will be uploaded online in the social media.
A still from the Lara Sardinas puppet musical. Lana Sardinas is fairy tale about a young sardine forced to cope with radical changes to her life brought about by the destruction of her home, the coral reefs. The challenges in the life of Lana Sardinas echoes the natural and man-made disasters that now threaten the health of the Sulu Celebes Sea.
For more information:
Yen Blanco Delgado
Ateneo de Zamboanga University 0917.722.2432 * 9910871 local 2290 * firstname.lastname@example.org/revamp