General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean - GFCM

SSF University

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Mission statement

The “SSF University” is designed to build capacity of small-scale fishers and fish workers on select topics, to share knowledge and to promote the exchange of best practices throughout the Mediterranean and Black Sea region.

This initiative responds to the recommendations within the Regional Plan of Action for Small-Scale Fisheries in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea (RPOA-SSF) on the need to ensure that small-scale fishers and fish workers have the necessary capacity and skills to contribute towards sustainable small-scale fisheries and livelihoods. In particular, Paragraph 39 e of the RPOA-SSF calls upon countries to:

“Facilitate education and training opportunities for men and women of the fisheries sector, such as summer universities, aimed at developing fisheries-specific skills, policy knowledge (fisheries, environment) and, in particular, knowledge and innovative solutions and technology developments”.

This initiative also supports implementation of the SSF Guidelines, which strongly recommend enhancing the capacity of small-scale fishing communities to enable them to participate in decision-making and development processes.

The “SSF University” consists of a series of workshops and training courses for small-scale fisheries stakeholders, focusing on the fishers and fish-workers active in the sector. The structure of each workshop varies and may consist of classroom learning, in the field experience and peer-to-peer exchanges.

TYPE OF TRAINING COURSES PROPOSED

There are two categories of SSF University workshops and training courses:

  • General courses include workshops and trainings on broader issues relevant to small-scale fisheries and are open to relevant participants from throughout the Mediterranean and/or Black Sea region;
  • Specialized courses are workshops and trainings on specific topics for fishers and fish workers in identified geographic locations and in selected languages only.

An overview of the programme, including details on how to participate in each course, is given below:

AVAILABLE WORKSHOPS AND TRAINING COURSES (2020)

General Courses

May 2020 (TBD)* | Participation of SSF platforms in decision-making processes in the context of the GFCM: Capacity building for Black Sea SSF organizations (Bulgaria)

Organizer General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM)
When May 2020 (TBD – 1.5 days)  
Where Burgas, Bulgaria
Course objective and agenda The workshop will introduce participants to the work of the GFCM, with particular focus on its work on SSF, as well as provide practical information on how SSF organizations can productively engage with the GFCM. Participants will share and exchange knowledge about existing organizations in the Black Sea region and their capacity building needs. 
Target participants Nationals of Black Sea countries: small-scale fishers, fish workers, SSF organization representatives and other relevant stakeholders  
Language of instruction English (other languages TBC) 
How to apply and contact information

Please fill in the following  form to apply for participation by 10 April 2020. You will be notified as soon as possible if your application has been accepted. 

For more information, please contact [email protected]

July 2020 (TBD)* | Participation of SSF platforms in decision-making processes in the context of the GFCM: Capacity building for Mediterranean SSF organizations (Morocco)

Organizer General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM)
When July 2020 (TBD – 1.5 days)  
Where Morocco
Course objective and agenda The workshop will introduce participants to the work of the GFCM, with particular focus on its work on SSF, as well as provide practical information on how SSF organizations can productively engage with the GFCM. Participants will share and exchange knowledge and best practices. Best practices from the hosting country will be showcased.
Target participants Nationals of Mediterranean countries: small-scale fishers, fish workers, SSF organization representatives and other relevant stakeholders   
Language of instruction English, French and Arabic (other languages TBD, as necessary)
How to apply and contact information

Please fill in the following form to apply for participation by 1 June 2020. You will be notified as soon as possible if your application has been accepted. 

For more information, please contact [email protected]

September/October 2020 (TBD)* | National SSF University days: Addressing common regional SSF issues (multiple GFCM countries)

Organizer FAO Mediterranean Projects (AdriaMedCopeMedIIEastMedMedSudMed) and the BlackSea4Fish project 
When September/October (TBD), 1 day
Where Trainings will take place simultaneously in the countries where the FAO Mediterranean Projects and the BlackSea4Fish project operate. The trainings will be hosted by the national research institutes. Participating countries TBC. 
Course objective and agenda The national workshops will address common regional SSF issues such as collaborative science (including participatory data collection, reporting and monitoring), local ecological knowledge (LEK), climate change and environmental impacts of fishing.
Target participants Nationals of the participating countries: small-scale fishers, fish workers and representatives of SSF organizations  
Language of instruction Language of the hosting country
How to apply and contact information

Please fill in the following form to apply for participation by 1 July 2020. You will be notified as soon as possible if your application has been accepted. 

For more information, please contact Marcelo Vasconcellos ([email protected])

October 2020* | Co-management best practices: learning exchange visit (Spain)

Organizer WWF Mediterranean Marine Initiative
When October 2020 (TBC)
Where Conil de la Frontera, Spain
Course objective and agenda The training will be organized around a site visit to Conil for approximately 50 participants to exchange experiences and learn about co-management including topics such as traceability, transparency, value addition and marketing, and local tourism.
Target participants Nationals of Mediterranean countries: small-scale fishers and representatives of SSF organizations
Language of instruction Arabic, English, Spanish, Croatian, Greek, Italian and Turkish
How to apply and contact information

Please fill in the following form to apply for participation by 1 August 2020. You will be notified as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

For more information, please contact Simone Niedermuller ([email protected])
Specialized Courses

24-26 February 2020 | Revive, Renew and Relaunch AKTEA (Belgium)

Organizer European Network of Women in Fisheries and Aquaculture (AKTEA)
When 24-26 February 2020
Where Brussels, Belgium 
Course objective and agenda

The workshop explored the role of women in fisheries and provided training to AKTEA members on the functioning of relevant legislative bodies, such as the EU, and how to make a difference in the legislative and policy making processes of European institutions. The training included a visit to the European Parliament Fisheries Committee and meetings with European law makers.

Workshop agenda (EN) | Webnews

Target participants Women small-scale fishers, fish workers and SSF organization representatives from European Mediterranean countries
Language of instruction English
Contact information
For further information, please contact Katia Frangoudes ([email protected])

February-April 2020* | Steps to starting a fisher's association (Croatia)

Organizer WWF Adria
When Three workshops between February and April 2020 (2 days per workshop)
Where

Three sites in Croatia: 

  • Nature park Lastovo 
  • Nature Park Telašćica 
  • Velebit channel
Course objective and agenda The workshops will review the features, benefits and opportunities offered by different types of SSF associations and discuss what the best form of organization may be. It will include presentations on relevant legal aspects and good practices in Croatia and in the EU.
Target participants Croatian nationals: small-scale fishers and representatives of SSF organizations
Language of instruction Croatian
Contact information and how to participate

If you wish to participate or have further information, please contact Mosor Prvan ([email protected])

Requests to participate should clearly include (1.) the name of the training course, (2.) your name, affiliation and country, and (3.) a brief description of why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and your community would benefit from your participation. You will be notified by the organizers as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

9-12 March 2020 | Exchange visit in Catalonia (Spain)

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Organizer WWF France, in collaboration with LIFE (Low Impact Fishers of Europe), the Natural marine park of Gulf of Lion and the National park of Calanques
When 9-12 March 2020
Where Catalonian region, Spain 
Course objective and agenda

The training aims at raising awareness on fisheries sustainability and co-management and strengthening the capacity of fishers to sell their fish at a fairer price. It will include meetings with the Catalonian government, fishers and scientists. 

Workshop agenda (FR)

Target participants French nationals: small-scale fishers and representatives of SSF organizations
Language of instruction French and Spanish
Contact information
If you wish to have further information, please contact Andrea Sabbio ([email protected])

5-9 April 2020* | Exchange trip strengthening organizations in the sustainable development of artisanal fishing (Italy)

Organizer FAO Subregional Office for North Africa, in coordination with the General Directorate of Fisheries and Aquaculture of Tunisia and the FAO country office in Morocco
When 5-9 April 2020
Where Rome and Orbetello, Italy
Course objective and agenda The learning exchange trip aims to improve participants’ knowledge by sharing best practices and discussing different ways of developing SSF organizations and how they function. Topics to be discussed also include, among other things, multi-user lagoon spatial planning, product development and social security.
Target participants Moroccan, Tunisian, French and Italian nationals: small-scale lagoon and eel fishers and representatives of relevant SSF organizations
Language of instruction French and Italian
Contact information and how to participate

If you wish to participate or have further information, please contact Valerio Crespi ([email protected]) by 17 March 2020.

Requests to participate should clearly include (1.) the name of the training course, (2.) your name, affiliation and country, and (3.) a brief description of why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and your community would benefit from your participation. You will be notified by the organizers as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

7, 14 and 16 April 2020* | Promotion of ecosystem friendly gear modifications in the trammel net fishery (Turkey)

Organizer WWF Turkey
When 7, 14 and 16 April 2020
Where Turkey:
  • Erdemli (7 April)
  • Foca (14 April)
  • Mordoğan (16 April)
Course objective and agenda The training will promote trammel net modifications to fishers in different sites on the Turkish coast with a view to reduce discards. It includes presentations on trammel net modifications and discussions about behavioural changes.
Target participants Turkish nationals: Small-scale fishers and representatives of SSF organizations
Language of instruction Turkish
Contact information and how to participate

If you wish to participate or have further information, please contact Timuçin Dinçer ([email protected] - in Turkish or English) by 9 March 2020.

Requests to participate should clearly include (1.) the name of the training course, (2.) your name, affiliation and country, and (3.) a brief description of why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and your community would benefit from your participation. You will be notified by the organizers as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

More information: https://www.wwf.org.tr/calismalarimiz/oceans/surdurulebilir_balkclk/

 

Between 20-24 April 2020* | How to strengthen your cooperative (Italy)

Organizer WWF Italy
When Between 20-24 April 2020 (1 day workshop, exact date TBC)
Where Cabras, Oristano, Italy
Course objective and agenda The workshop aims to strengthen the role of cooperatives and fishers representativeness as well as the ability of fishers to share needs and experiences, and at the same time reducing conflicts. The workshop is part of the activities of the local co-management process, which aims to build capacity of local fishers.
Target participants Italian nationals: Small-scale fishers and representatives of SSF organizations
Language of instruction Italian
Contact information and how to participate

If you wish to participate or have further information, please contact Claudia Scianna ([email protected]) by 20 March 2020.

Requests to participate should clearly include (1.) the name of the training course, (2.) your name, affiliation and country, and (3.) a brief description of why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and your community would benefit from your participation. You will be notified by the organizers as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

Between 18-22 May 2020* | International and national legal basis for SSF (Italy)

Organizer WWF Italy
When Between 18-22 May 2020 (1 day workshop, exact date TBC)
Where Rome, Italy
Course objective and agenda The main objective of the workshop is to promote the exchange of best practices and solutions among Italian Coast Guard officials for the implementation of international and national legislation concerning SSF within and outside Marine Protected Areas.
Target participants Italian nationals: government officials (representatives of the Coast Guard in Gulf of Patti, Porto Cesareo Marine Protected Areas and Penisola del Sinis – Isola di Mal di Ventre Marine Protected Areas)
Language of instruction Italian
Contact information and how to participate

If you wish to participate or have further information, please contact Claudia Scianna ([email protected]) by 13 April 2020.

Requests to participate should clearly include (1.) the name of the training course, (2.) your name, affiliation and country, and (3.) a brief description of why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and your community would benefit from your participation. You will be notified by the organizers as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

October 2020 (TBD)* | What is a fish producer organization ? Opportunities and constraints for small-scale fish producer organizations in the Mediterranean (Belgium)

Organizer Low Impact Fishers of Europe (LIFE)
When End of October (TBD – 1 day)
Where Brussels, Belgium
Course objective and agenda The workshop will inform in detail on what is a Fish Producer Organization (FPO), will examine their importance and the potential role and benefits of FPOs dedicated to small-scale fish producers. Steps for setting up producer organizations will be examined and several case studies of existing successful FPOs, as well as the constraints experienced by several attempts to establish FPOs will be presented.
Target participants Nationals of GFCM countries, with a focus on EU Mediterranean countries: small-scale fishers and fish workers
Language of instruction TBC according to participation
Contact information and how to participate

If you wish to participate or have further information, please contact Brian O’Riordan ([email protected])

Requests to participate should clearly include (1.) the name of the training course, (2.) your name, affiliation and country, and (3.) a brief description of why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and your community would benefit from your participation. You will be notified by the organizers as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

Throughout 2020* | Personalized support in the development of the business plan of entrepreneurial initiatives of fisher organizations (Online)

Organizer Low Impact Fishers of Europe (LIFE)
When Throughout 2020
Where Online (via Skype, with the possibility of face-to face sessions and select field visits to sites in Spain)
Course objective and agenda In continuity with a the previous project partnered with Fundación Lonxanet which sought to create business initiatives in the framework of sustainable blue growth, social impact and positive incidence to the sea, this training aims at providing personalized support to fisher organizations in building their business plans and starting their activities.
Target participants Spanish nationals: small-scale fishers and SSF organization representatives from European Mediterranean countries
Language of instruction Spanish
Contact information and how to participate

If you are interested in develop a business, wish to participate or have further information, please contact Brian O’Riordan ([email protected])

Requests to participate should clearly include (1.) the name of the training course, (2.) your name, affiliation and country, and (3.) a brief description of why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and your community would benefit from your participation. You will be notified by the organizers as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

End of 2020* | Fishing tourism for the blue economy: Strengthening the capacity of SSF stakeholders to develop activities for livelihoods diversification (France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Tunisia)

Organizer Petra Patrimonia
When TBC (5 days per site at the end of 2020)
Where

Five sites (TBC):

  • France (Bastia, Toulon)
  • Italy (Catolica)
  • Spain (Vigo)
  • Greece (Pireus)
  • Tunisia (Tabarka)
Course objective and agenda This training aims to strengthen the entrepreneurial skills of SSF communities in order to develop complementary livelihoods with a focus on fisheries diversification activities, including tourism, for higher value-added activities.
This workshop aims to coach trainers capable of accompanying fishers and village fishing communities in the implementation of these diversification activities.
Target participants French, Italian, Greek and Spanish nationals: Small-scale fishers, representatives of SSF organizations and civil socity organizations
Language of instruction Language of the hosting country
Contact information and how to participate

If you wish to participate or have further information, please contact Remi Bellia ([email protected]) or Tommaso Scavone ([email protected])

 

Requests to participate should clearly include (1.) the name of the training course, (2.) your name, affiliation and country, and (3.) a brief description of why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and your community would benefit from your participation. You will be notified by the organizers as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

 

More information: http://www.petrapatrimonia-corse.com/portfolio-items/fit4blue/

End of 2020* | Traceability, sustainability and fisheries management for SSF (Malta)

Organizer LOQUS
When Second half of 2020 (TBD – 1-day)
Where Malta
Course objective and agenda This workshop aims to provide SSF organization representatives and government officials with information on solutions for economic valuation and traceability of fisheries activities using GIS and marine spatial planning and promoting economic and environmental sustainability.
Target participants Nationals of GFCM countries: Small-scale fishers and government officials
Language of instruction English
Contact information and how to participate

If you wish to participate or have further information, please contact the LOQUS fisheries team ([email protected]).

Requests to participate should clearly include (1.) the name of the training course, (2.) your name, affiliation and country, and (3.) a brief description of why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and your community would benefit from your participation. You will be notified by the organizers as soon as possible if your application has been accepted.

For more information: https://www.loqusgroup.com/fisheries.html

* Please note that these courses have been postponed due to the Covid-19 situation. As soon as alternative dates are confirmed, we will update the website accordingly.

 

HOW TO APPLY FOR PARTICIPATION

For the general courses, please fill in the application form located within the relevant course description above and you will be notified upon validation of your application.

For the specialized courses, please send an email to the organizers (contact details in the course descriptions above), clearly stating which workshop/training course you are interested in, as well as your name, affiliation and country. Please also briefly describe why you are interested in the training and how you see that you and you community would benefit from your participation.

STEERING COMMITTEE

The Friends of SSF platform is coordinating the implementation of the SSF University, providing strategic direction and technically supporting, as required, the various workshops/training courses included.

The Steering Committee will review applications for participation and will evaluate applicant eligibility. If there are more applicants than available places in a specific workshop/training course, the Steering Committee retains the right to select participants based on an assessment of the apparent relevance of a chosen course to the applicant’s work. A geographic and gender balance among trainees across the SSF University programme will also be sought.