San­dals Foun­da­tion Cel­e­brates World Oceans Day with Gros Islet youth

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL -

Fo­cus­ing on the ob­jec­tive of reach­ing as many chil­dren as pos­si­ble with the mes­sage of un­der­stand­ing the im­por­tance of the ocean, the San­dals Foun­da­tion in Saint Lu­cia ob­served World Oceans Day 2015 with over 160 youth in Gros Islet on June 9, 2015.

The ini­tia­tive saw the San­dals Foun­da­tion plan­ning and host­ing an in­ter­ac­tive pro­gram at the Gros Islet Pri­mary School with team mem­bers and guests in­form­ing the youth about hu­man im­pact on the sus­tain­abil­ity of the oceans.

Ac­cord­ing to San­dals Foun­da­tion En­vi­ron­men­tal Of­fi­cer, Jonathan Hernould, “The San­dals Foun­da­tion is com­mit­ted to con­tin­u­ing our ef­forts to ed­u­cate per­sons about the en­vi­ron­ment by fo­cus­ing on the im­por­tance of our marine habi­tat and its con­ser­va­tion. There are many in­dus­tries in the Caribbean that de­pend upon the oceans, such as tourism and fish­ing. It is im­por­tant that we share th­ese lessons with our youth so that they un­der­stand how im­por­tant the oceans are to the liveli­hoods of so many peo­ple and for the fu­ture of the Caribbean.”

A 45-minute “Healthy Ocean, Healthy Planet” ses­sion on the lawns of the school, saw an en­light­en­ing en­gage­ment that high­lighted not only the youth’s knowl­edge on the protective prac­tices of the ocean, but also sought to open their minds to the many benefits – from health to liveli­hoods – that mankind has for cen­turies reaped from the ocean. Stu­dents were made to un­der­stand the bio­di­ver­sity of the ocean, its abil­ity to trap car­bon diox­ide and keep the tem­per­a­ture of the earth to lev­els that sus­tain life. The neg­a­tive hu­man-re­lated im­pact of man’s use of the ocean was not ig­nored with mat­ters like solid waste man­age­ment, car­bon diox­ide and nu­tri­ent waste tak­ing cen­ter stage. Ac­cord­ing to the youth, the con­cept of Re­duce, Re­use, and Re­cy­cle is one that must be given more pri­or­ity at home, in school and in public spa­ces.

The stu­dents also agreed not to lit­ter their sur­round­ings and, most im­por­tantly, to en­cour­age their friends and fam­ily to do the same.

The San­dals Foun­da­tion has sev­eral ac­tive ocean con­ser­va­tion ini­tia­tives in­clud­ing sea tur­tle mon­i­tor­ing, marine sanc­tu­ary man­age­ment and conch con­ser­va­tion. The World Oceans Day ini­tia­tive is yet an­other way in which the San­dals Foun­da­tion con­tin­ues to play its part in en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion by rais­ing aware­ness of en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues and open­ing up the dis­cus­sion about how in­di­vid­u­als can pro­tect the planet.

San­dals Foun­da­tion rep­re­sen­ta­tives Ter­rol and Orena em­brace the stu­dents of the Gros Islet Pri­mary School fol­low­ing the out­door ‘World Oceans Day’

ex­er­cise on school grounds.

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