Partnerships WITH COMMUNITIES
Local communities was instrumental since Belitong Geopark initiatives started 2016. Involving youth, women, tourism communities, community organizations, and village heads, community partnerships was done through several principles.
Bottom up approach
Geopark Belitong concept was first introduced to Belitung and East Belitung regencies by ITB 81 Foundation. The concept was then developed and promoted to a wider stakeholders with grassroot communities such as Gapabel, Arsel, and Karang Taruna. Community organizations has always been an integral part of Belitong Geopark management.
Infrastructure development in geosites was initiated firstly by local community. Once they started, the construction and facilities may obtain support by head of village office, local and national government, as well as corporations. Local community in geosites has initiatived the crowdfunding in building some facilities. They promoted the geosites through social, local and national media. Other governmental and corporate projects and fundings also support the facilities development.
3. Local Community is the Leading Role Local community leads in managing the natural resources based on tradition and local wisdom. For example, the community in Lumut Hill develops the geosite by applying local wisdom that consist of certain rules and prohibition where it leads them to keep water resources sustainable. The spiritual festivity heritage is still celebrated by the Sawang tribe to deliver the gratitude to gain the abundant fish. Local community involvement is also presented by BiG (Belitong Geopark) Youth, a volunteering movement that has been initated by PCMI Bangka Belitung (an alumni association from International Youth Exchange Program under Ministry of Youth and Sports). The project that has been started since December 2016 is aimed to open the chance for young people in optimizing their contribution to Belitong Geopark. One of BiG programmes is conducting English trainings for local guides.