Field trips and training
This program is specifically designed for kids, with flexible adaptations for ages from 5 to 12 years old. Kids are taught how to safely use snorkeling gear and to operate simple underwater digital cameras. They are guided with a professional team to a safe shallow bay where they can snorkel and take pictures of themselves and of the creatures they find. After the water, kids are usually hungry and we provide a meal. Then we start to look at the pictures they took and discussion on ecology and environmental issues start from there. Whenever we can, we give them copies of the pictures of themselves snorkeling so they have something to remember, to be proud and to show family and friends. The program usually finishes having the kids color some illustrations to take home with some important local environmental basic info. Whenever the water conditions doesn’t allow to snorkel, it is always possible to find optional water field trips to a lake, a river, organize a beach cleanup, a local aquarium, or even a sewage treatment plan. Action plans will follow depending on community needs and kids interests. Get them motivated is the first thing. Create local networks from where new projects start and flow is the critical point.
Mangroves, admittedly, are not only important but crucial for the coastal areas. Since estuarine areas are highly populated areas, the slightest ecological imbalance will take a heavy toll. They play a vital role in stabilizing these areas. No engineering and technological solutions can be sought for stabilizing these areas. Even if we negate all benefits of mangroves as forests, their value as “protector of shore-line” is enough to convince us for conserving them.
Mangroves are buffers between the land and the sea. Coastlines throughout the world are facing serious problems of coastal erosion and the threat of rising sea levels due to global warming have increased the threats by several folds. To control such assault of the sea on land the nature has provided what is called as Mangroves, a tropical littoral ecosystem which is more dynamic than the sea itself.
Mangroves not only help in preventing soil erosion but also act as a catalyst in reclaiming land from seas. This is a very unique phenomenon, since there is a general tendency of water to engulf land. Mangrove forests and estuaries are the breeding and nursery grounds for a number of marine organisms including the commercially important shrimp, crab and fish species. Hence, loss of mangroves not only affects us indirectly but there are direct economic repercussions through loss of fishing industry.
Mangrove trees are also used for house building, furniture, transmission as well as telephone poles and certain household items. When these activities are managed appropriately it is possible to derive timber products from mangrove forests without significant environmental degradation, and while maintaining their value as a nursery and a source of food for commercial capture fisheries.
A chance to read
It is already proven that early learning is more cost effective than any other kind of schooling. There are few things that produce more bonding between kids and parents than read a book together. The felling and the emotion create the perfect moment for knowledge development. We believe that creating great books would be a great way to make a change. Promote conscious artists and publish our own environmental books, and distributing them for kids to read, own and share with family and friends. Bringing those books to locations where kids don’t have access to own one, or where the local teachers don’t have any kind of resource, is an economic and relatively easy way to educate.
Early reading promotes bonding, vocabulary building and prevent learning disabilities. One of the most important things in the learning process is to relate reading with real life in a direct way, and this is why we want to integrate environmental book reading into our hand on experiences.
Shells on the sea
The business may not appear to be very large, says PhD. Mathew Richmond, but the sheer volume of shells and other marine curios sold is staggering. In addition, shells are used for the commercial production of buttons, inlays in furniture and for the production of specialized lime. The collection and export of shells and other marine curios is mostly unregulated, but indications are that hundreds of tonnes of cleaned shells have been exported over the last thirty years. The damage to shallow coastal habitats caused by turning over the boulders or prizing coral off the seabed may have considerable local impact on the productivity of the area. The trade in dead coral and turtle products is banned in many countries, but until we have a system of management that ensures collection of the shells and other species sold is not depleting the wild stocks or interfering with the balance of life in the shallow marine habitats, these activities should not be encouraged. DO NOT BUY SHELLS, CORALS OR OTHER CURIOS. Please spread the word.