United Nations
Fish Forever
by Rare (Non-governmental organization (NGO))
Rare commits to mobilize $100 Million USD by 2021 towards implementation of SDG14 specifically to support sustainable small-scale fisheries and ending overfishing, protecting critical marine habitat, and providing access for small-scale fishers to marine resources and markets. Rare commits to reduce the threat from overfishing in more than 32 million ha and engage more than 1 million fishers in sustainable fishing practices across 10 countries.

One billion people depend on fish as their primary source of animal protein, yet overfishing threatens the sustainability of this crucial food supply and the livelihoods of people, especially fishers, who depend on these fisheries. Fishers from developing countries make up 95 percent of the global fisheries work force and are hardest hit as catch decreases. Fully 90 percent of fishers from developing countries operate within small-scale fisheries of coastal communities, and they catch half the total global fish catch. Small-scale fishing encompasses low-technology, low-capital fishing practices and is undertaken by individual households. About 50% of the workforce, particularly for processing and trade, are women. This issue immediately threatens global marine biodiversity as well, especially vulnerable coral reefs, sea grass beds, and mangroves. Reforming small-scale fisheries, especially in LDCs and SIDS, could yield benefits on a global scale for sustainable development and environmental protection, however, very little attention and support of the international community has been devoted to this sector over the past 2 decades.

Since 2012 Rares Fish Forever program has supported fishing communities as they change the way they fish, working with local authorities to codify access rights for coastal fishers who have agreed to take responsibility for restoring local fish populations and sustainably managing the habitat on which their livelihoods depend. By building the capacity of local communities and their leaders, communities develop sustainable fishing guidelines, create fish sanctuaries, conserve critical habitat, and empower better enforcement to manage fish stocks.

For more information: https://portal.rare.org and https://rare.org/program/fish-forever
Progress reports
By 2020, sustainably manage and protect marine and coastal ecosystems to avoid significant adverse impacts, including by strengthening their resilience, and take action for their restoration in order to achieve healthy and productive oceans
Type of commitment
  • Community or Locally Managed Marine Areas
  • Integrated Coastal Management
By 2020, effectively regulate harvesting and end overfishing, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing and destructive fishing practices and implement science-based management plans, in order to restore fish stocks in the shortest time feasible, at least to levels that can produce maximum sustainable yield as determined by their biological characteristics
Type of commitment
  • Compliance, monitoring and enforcement
  • Reduction and elimination fishing practices and gear that destroy/degrade marine habitat
By 2020, conserve at least 10 per cent of coastal and marine areas, consistent with national and international law and based on the best available scientific information
Type of commitment
  • No take marine protected area
  • Multiple use marine protected area
  • Locally or community managed marine areas
By 2030, increase the economic benefits to Small Island developing States and least developed countries from the sustainable use of marine resources, including through sustainable management of fisheries, aquaculture and tourism
Type of commitment
  • Economic benefits from sustainable fisheries
Provide access for small-scale artisanal fishers to marine resources and markets
Type of commitment
  • Legal/policy/institutional measures
  • Access to market-based instruments
  • Access to coastal fishing grounds
  • Community empowerment for fisheries management
September 2021
Mobilize $100 million in philanthropy for sustainable small-scale fisheries by 2021, and re-balance the fisheries discussion to mobilize additional support and financing for small-scale fisheries from governments, multilaterals, bilaterals, foundations and the private sector.
September 2021
Support 10 countries on a path to community-led, sustainable, small-scale fisheries and improved marine biodiversity protection, which at a minimum will result in a reduced threat from overfishing in more than 32 million ha and more than 1 million fishers engaged in sustainable fishing practices that deliver measureable benefits including livelihoods, food security, and social and environmental resilience to climate change.
September 2021
By 2021 effectively demonstrate, through knowledge sharing platforms, workshops, and in-person or virtual exchanges how sustainable small-scale fisheries contribute to the integrated implementation of SDGs 1, 2, 5, 13, 14 and 15.
Financing (in USD)
100,000,000 USD
Staff / Technical expertise
Staff in headquarters and country offices, local fellows, community leaders, and government, private sector and NGO partners
Staff / Technical expertise
Staff in headquarters and country offices, local fellows, community leaders, and government, private sector and NGO partners
Basic information
Time-frame: 10/2015 - 9/2021
Rare partners with local organizations in the communities where we work, including municipal governments, fisher groups, local NGOs, and community leaders
Ocean Basins
  • Global
Beneficiary countries
Marshall Islands
Other beneficaries
Other countries to be identified, local communities, and small-scale fishers
Contact information
Brett Jenks, CEO, Rare, bjenks@rare.org,
Arlington, United States of America
Other SDGs
United Nations