The WASTCON or the hatching of the 1st West African network of actors of the conservation of marine turtles:
It was on a beach in Lomé that the West African Sea Turtles Conservation (WASTCON) officially hatched in November 2020. It is a sub-regional network dedicated to the actors of the conservation of marine turtles. Here is its history but also and especially its hopes….
Beautiful egg imbued with all the hopes of its progenitors, the WASTCON was laid in Grand Bassam on the Ivorian coast in December 2018. About twenty actors of the conservation of marine turtles from the 6 coastal countries from Liberia to Nigeria had then shaped with their aspirations this promising egg. This activity was carried out with delicacy under the benevolent gaze and advice of the big brother of Central Africa, the Network of Actors for the Safeguard of Marine Turtles (RASTOMA).
From this date, and during its incubation phase, WASTCON has – under the shelter of its shell and thanks to the support of IUCN-PACO and the Small Initiatives Program (SIP) – started to take shape. Supported by a dynamic Ad-hoc committee and accompanied by the expertise of Well Grounded, this phase has allowed: to give the fetus a face by the elaboration of a logo; then to form its skeleton and to place its vital organs by the participative drafting of its statutory documents; finally to inscribe in its living memory information that will be useful to orient itself once delivered to itself in the “big water”. This is the function given to its operationalized 2020-2025 strategic plan.
It is finally 2 years later, in November 2020, on a beach of Lome in Togo that WASTCON decided to hatch. Breaking its protective shell under the watchful eye of its various progenitors, its big brother the RASTOMA and its various supporters WABiCC and BIOPAMA gathered for the occasion. Each one was then reassured that he recognized himself well in this small prodigy beating the sand of his fins and in a hurry to join the ocean. Thus, after a meticulous study, the statutes and internal regulations, charter, strategic plan and operational plan 2021 of WASTCON were validated with joy and loud cheers. And because this unique and therefore precious youth is the fruit of the aspirations of many parents, the day of its birth was also the day that was chosen to designate its official guardians. They joined the WASTCON Executive Board through their original organizations. They are now in charge of taking care of it and accompanying it during its first years of existence.
Here they are presented:
|Function||Organisation||State||Name and Surname|
|President||Fondation pour l’Environnement||Côte d’Ivoire||DIABY Tidiane|
|Vice-President||Ghana Wildlife Society (GWS)||Ghana||KENYENSO Solomon|
|Secretary General||Akassa Development Foundation (ADF)||Nigeria||EBIEGBERI RAYNUS Henry|
|Treasurer||Action Plus||Benin||OGOU Maixent|
|Assistant Treasurer||AS-BTM||Côte d’Ivoire||KONE N’Fa AMARA|
|Communication officer||AGBO-ZEGUE||Togo||AKOMEDI Mensah|
|Advisor||Nature Tropicale||Benin||DOSSOU-BODJRENOU Joséa|
Having taken their respective missions very seriously, the members of this Executive Board have notably allowed WASTCON to reach the sea to make its first experiences. Thus, by approaching the Ivorian beaches (where it was laid) the young WASTCON could be officially registered by the national administration as a sub-regional network.
Since then, anxious to be able to accompany their young network in its life path, the members of the Executive Board are watching over it:
They animate their sub-regional associative life; make their individual actions visible (Facebook : Wastcon Africa) and discuss their collective projects; shape their skills (fundraising, external communication, political advocacy) by actively participating in the online trainings offered by PPI; take part in the inter-network meetings of RASTOMA (Central Africa), North Africa Sea Turtle Network (NAST Net) and WASTCON; canvass potential technical and financial partners in search of partnerships to support the implementation of its priority projects to the great joy of all the sea turtles that, like WASTCON, frequent Africa’s Atlantic coast.
Here is the story of a rather special marine turtle that is still being talked about…