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102

SEPTEMBER 2016

|

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL

LOCAL LENS

BY ANDREW PARKS

n

LIBERIA

Please submit your favorite,

recent photograph to

be considered for Local

Lens. Images must be high

resolution (at least 300 dpi

at 8” x 10”, or 1 MB or larger)

and must not be in print

elsewhere. Please include

a short description of the

scene/event, as well as your

name, brief biodata and

the type of camera used, to

locallens@afsa.org.

O

ff the coast of Liberia, small-scale fishermen return from a laborious day of fishing. Each vessel

displays flags representing the diverse nationalities of the boat owner and the workers on board.

The fish trade generates livelihoods for millions of people in Liberia and West Africa generally,

and represents a critical source of nutrition. Until recently, the fish population had been deci-

mated by large-scale industrial trawling. However, thanks to a partnership among the Liberian Ministry

of Fisheries, the World Bank and the West Africa Regional Fisheries Program, conservation zones where

trawlers are not allowed to fish have been established and dedicated to local fishing communities. These

efforts have enabled small-scale fishermen to reclaim their livelihoods and improve the quality of life for

their families and communities.

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Andrew Parks is a Foreign Service officer posted in Monrovia. As an engineering officer with USAID, he works on

economic growth, health and education programs as they pertain to the development of infrastructure—including

power production; farm-to-market roads; health clinics; community water distribution and treatment systems;

and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) programs for rural schools.