24 Jun 2020 - From illegal fisher, to reformed leader, fostering coastal and marine protection through a sea change of partnerships, empowerment and inclusion.
The Philippines is a major fishing nation, on which the livelihoods of more than 35 million people directly rely. Ocean health is key for the planet and its people to thrive.
For Quirsito ‘Bok’ Cajegas, a fisher in Davao Gulf, Philippines, staunch advocacy of marine conservation comes with the territory.
But it wasn’t always this way.
Before his reformation, Bok was a self-described illegal fisher. For 23 years, Bok employed illicit compressor fishing methods, and once opposed the establishment of a Marine Protected Area (MPA) in Barangay Bato Sta Cruz, Davao del Sur.
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Image: Philippine fisher compressor diving, Photo credit: Alex Hofford