MY OCEAN NEWS

Domino Al­bert, Project AWARE Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Man­ager

Sport Diver - - Koh tao -

Like many divers, I have a strong per­sonal affin­ity for the ocean. For me, that con­nec­tion orig­i­nally came from the PADI® sys­tem of diver ed­u­ca­tion. As I ad­vanced through diver train­ing dur­ing the early years of my scuba ca­reer, PADI cour­ses con­tin­u­ously en­cour­aged my en­vi­ron­men­tal aware­ness and taught me con­ser­va­tion philoso­phies that em­pha­size the im­por­tance of pro­tect­ing frag­ile aquatic ecosys­tems, My PADI train­ing opened my eyes not only to the beauty of the ocean, but to my re­spon­si­bil­ity as a diver to pro­tect it. Sounds like Project AWARE®, I hear you say! Yes, but don’t be mis­taken - Project AWARE is so much more than the PADI project it started as back in the late 80s. What started as a diver ed­u­ca­tion project soon co­a­lesced into a re­mark­able global move­ment of pas­sion­ate divers who share a deep con­nec­tion with the ocean and take ac­tion for its pro­tec­tion, and in 1992, Project AWARE was founded as its own in­de­pen­dent non-profit ocean con­ser­va­tion or­ga­ni­za­tion. This year, Project AWARE cel­e­brates 25 years of ac­tion for the ocean - 25 years of pro­tect­ing ma­rine wildlife and frag­ile ma­rine habi­tats through sci­ence, ed­u­ca­tion, in­flu­ence and com­mu­nity ac­tion. Over the past quar­ter of a cen­tury, Project AWARE has demon­strated a deep com­mit­ment to bring­ing to­gether a world­wide com­mu­nity bat­tling ocean threats where scuba divers are uniquely po­si­tioned to di­rectly af­fect real, long-term pos­i­tive change. In 2017, Project AWARE is re­flect­ing on the past and look­ing ahead to the fu­ture to fur­ther strengthen its mis­sion and vi­sion.

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