In 2022, the City of Monrovia, Liberia, was selected as a grantee of the Global Cities Fund for Migrants and Refugees (GCF), the MMC’s instrument to channel international funding directly to cities to implement inclusive projects of their own design.
With support from the GCF, the City of Monrovia planted 20,000 trees to strengthen its coastal resilience while also providing vocational training to more than 100 youth and business start-up funding to 50 women in the migrant community.
As a coastal city below sea level, Monrovia is highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, including sea level rise, coastal erosion, and land subsidence. Monrovia is also the world’s wettest capital, placing the city at increased risk for extreme flooding from rainfall. These climate hazards have had devastating consequences for Monrovia’s residents, particularly migrants living in the city’s informal coastal communities. Over the last decade, flooding and erosion have displaced more than 5,000 Monrovians, destroyed hundreds of homes, and endangered the fishery industry. Coastal low-income communities such as West Point and New Kru Town bear the brunt of climate disasters and are disproportionately at risk for climate displacement.
The MonGROW Green project is strengthening Monrovia’s climate resilience and connecting migrant women and youth to economic opportunities through vocational training and entrepreneurship programs.
To mitigate the adverse impacts of climate change, Monrovia is engaging 100 internally displaced youth to plant 20,000 mangrove and coconut trees in areas at high risk of flooding and coastal erosion. The youth also received technical and vocational training to develop life-skills and learn about employment opportunities.
Additionally, the project provided entrepreneurship training and business start-up funding to 50 women entrepreneurs from migrant communities. This includes, for example, a woman whose home was destroyed by flooding and who used this support to start a new business and rebuild her life.
Through the GCF, Monrovia took strides to become a greener, more climate resilient, and more inclusive city for migrants and non-migrant communities alike.
Jefferson T. Koijee, Mayor of Monrovia, Liberia
The Global Cities Fund will empower us to green our city… and provide the requisite skills and competencies for our youngest citizens to compete in the labor market.
The MonGrow Green project is helping cultivate a greener, more inclusive, and climate resilient Monrovia.
Monrovia’s tree planting efforts—which cover more than seven kilometers of high-risk coastline—are strengthening the city’s disaster preparedness and resilience. Over time, these trees will grow into a bulwark against extreme flooding, land subsidence, and coastal erosion, preventing climate displacement, preserving fishing industries, and protecting essential infrastructure.
Through its vocational training and tree planting program, Monrovia is teaching climate mitigation and community adaptation to more than 100 youth from flood-affected communities. Over the course of the project, the city has engaged more than 10,000 residents on climate action through town hall meetings and community engagement efforts. These efforts are raising awareness of the importance of inclusive climate action while ensuring the trees are protected and cultivated by the communities themselves.
The MonGROW Green project is also stimulating the local economy and socioeconomic inclusion for migrants. To date, the project has provided management training to more than 50 women migrant entrepreneurs, who have reported improved profits and business success as a result. Similarly, the youth who participated in the project’s vocational training is learning essential life-skills that will help them compete in an emerging green labor market.
Stay tuned for more impact updates at the end of the GCF grant term!
Olivia Negba, Project Client
I built my house but the sea came and carried it away. Now my family and I are staying at someone else’s place, but with this business start-up funding, we will be able to get back on track.