Colonies of Hope

Blog written by guest blogger and marine biologist Clare Baranowski

Preserving coral reefs is a growing concern in the Maldives

At Gili Lankanfushi, we are recovering our coral reefs through the Coral lines Project. By growing small fragments of coral on hanging ropes (lines) and then transplanting them to our house reef near One Palm Island, we hope to see regeneration and aim to kick start the health of our house reef.

Our Coral Lines Project started three years ago and currently holds around 7484 coral colonies. We are consistently adding small fragments of coral to the already growing population on 153 lines.

Josie monitoring our 153 coral lines

The vulnerable nature of coral populations mean that they undergo cycles of disturbance and recovery. Our house reef was affected by warmer waters created by the El Nino event in 2016 which bleached much of the corals. Yet against all odds, most fragments in our coral lines nursery survived.  They have also been faced with a Crown of Thorns (coral predators) outbreak this year and have still remained intact.

In some cases, the corals in our lines are no longer present on shallow reefs in the area.

Now, is the perfect time to begin stage two of our coral restoration project by moving coral from our nursery to our house reef.  Transplanting coral is a delicate procedure with a lot of trial and error. We began slowly by creating a test site with a small number of coral colonies to ensure we would not lose healthy coral unnecessarily.

Josie beginning the process

We found a site with conditions not too dissimilar to the nursery. The area had to be flat and solid, with no loose material and space for growth.  It also had to be an area that is easily accessible for monitoring, but nowhere in danger of tampering or accidental damage.  We chose a depth of 8 metres in the middle of house reef drop off where we regularly snorkel. Another major concern was the Crown of Thorns Starfish, so we placed the coral in an area visited regularly by Harvey Edwards, Ocean Paradise Dive Centre manager, who has been removing these starfish from the reef for months.

Clare cutting the coral from the line

The next step was to cut the colonies from the lines in the nursery, and transport them in mesh bags in the water. We decided to use three different Acropora species to begin with as they are fast growing and like a lot of light and a moderate current. Once at the site, we cleaned the area of algae and attached the coral to ensure protection from extreme water movement. We placed them an equal distance apart to allow quick growth and attached the coral using epoxy, which is a clay like cement. We were aware from previous studies that Miliput (epoxy clay) has been seen to kill the part of the coral it is attaching, so we placed small amounts of putty at the base of the coral.

Once a week, for a total of six weeks, we will measure growth and survivorship of the coral.  We hope to replicate the test at different depths and locations to find a suitable site to start a larger restoration project. However, we will hold off on most of the major transplantation until after the monsoon season.

Attaching the colonies using epoxy

Due to the fragility of coral species, our rehabilitation plans are very flexible, and subject to a long monitoring period.  We expect to adapt our approach and long term management to ensure we keep up with the changing environment of the reef. Previous restoration plans have been hindered by external threats, so we are so excited to finally begin this project. We will be producing scientific data along the way which we hope will contribute to current coral reef rehabilitation knowledge.

Although our transplants are working well so far, we will still have many question to answer in the future such as: are the corals on the house reef still reproducing? As these corals survived the last bleaching, will they be more genetically suited to future hostile conditions? The answers to these questions are all just a work in progress and we will have to keep on watching and learning as we replant and monitor these corals over the next few years. As our house reef sustained a lot of mortality and the coral cover is low, we hope that this new project will help to rejuvenate the reef and raise awareness.

PADI’s guest blogger Clare Baranowski introduces herself:

I am a marine zoologist from the UK who has worked throughout the tropics researching mega fauna and reef ecosystems in the Caribbean and Indian Ocean. I have experience monitoring and restoring coral and surveying manta, turtle and dolphin populations. I began my career as a science communicator before moving into research and management roles, this is why I incorporate outreach and education into every project I work on and I hope to continue this at Gili Lankanfushi.

MALDIVES DIVING HOLIDAYS

Life beneath the surface in the Maldives is an underwater Disneyland, perfect for dive enthusiasts. The Maldives is renowned as one of the very best diving locations in the world. There’s not only an abundance of reef life here but also spectacular coloured coral and crystal clear water.

Photo credit - Ruth Franklin

Photo credit – Nigel Wade

WHY CHOOSE THE MALDIVES FOR YOUR DIVING HOLIDAY?

The Maldives ticks all of the boxes when it comes to diving holidays. This tropical location boasts visibility levels of up to 40 meters, making it a great destination for advanced divers. However diving in the Maldives is not just for the experienced. The shallow lagoons and channels make it the perfect location to try diving for the very first time. Plus what better destination in the world is there to gain your scuba-diving certifications?

Photo credit - Ruth Franklin

Photo credit – Renee Sorenson

The Maldives is also home to protected UNESCO Biosphere Reserves. The presence of currents in this island nation means that open water channels are perfect for drift diving and it’s also possible to swim with gentle ocean giants like manta rays and whale sharks. Don’t forget the Maldives has year round water temperatures of 26 – 29 degrees Celsius!

THE BEST TIME OF YEAR FOR DIVING IN THE MALDIVES

Fortunately, the diving season in the Maldives is open all year round with the calmest conditions from December through to June. As the Maldives is located in the tropics, it is susceptible to both wet and dry seasons. June to November is the south-west monsoon season, bringing with it with overcast and wet conditions, especially in June and July. During these months expect slightly less visibility and different currents, although there is still plenty of marine life on offer, as well as sunny spells. Generally reef life is more varied and visibility is better on the western side of any atoll from May to November and on the eastern side from December to April. Reef sharks, hammerheads and whale sharks are found in the Maldives year round, along with manta rays and sea turtles, you just need to know where to head at the time of year you plan to dive!

Photo credit - Ruth Franklin

Photo credit – Renee Sorenson

DIVING OPTIONS

There are a number of diving options when it comes to Maldives. For example at Secret Paradise, value for money diving holidays and tours will be offered that you will remember for a lifetime. Enjoy an all-inclusive guesthouse stay and be transferred by boat to incredible nearby dive sites, the same sites that you would dive from a resort but at half the cost! Our diving holidays are an affordable alternative to a resort stay and also allow you the flexibility of island hopping or if your budget is larger, atoll hopping to benefit from the best dive locations during your time of travel.

Photo credit - Ruth Franklin

Photo credit – Renee Sorenson

Liveaboards are a popular dive holiday option, allowing you to scour the waters for the ultimate dive spot each day. These days most Liveaboards operate a year round schedule offering 7 night, 10 night and 14 night cruises not only in the central atolls but to the deep south and deep north offering opportunities to discover less dived sites and pristine coral.

SECRET PARADISE DIVING HOLIDAYS

 Secret Paradise, offers six diverse one island based diving packages, all in different atolls allowing you access to what are some of the best dive sites in the world. Our packages include Dharavandhoo, perfect if you want to encounter 100s of manta rays in Baa Atoll, Hulhumale if you need to stay close to the capital, Maafushi, South Male Atoll, Dhigurah home of the whale shark in Ari Atoll, Rasdhoo, the ideal location to spot a hammerhead and Gan in Laamu atoll.

Photo credit - Ruth Franklin

Photo credit – Boutique Beach

Our island hopping itineraries in Male Atoll and Ari Atoll allow you to discover a range of dive sites and marine life whilst at the same time experiencing Maldives local life, tradition and culture, with or without a private dive guide.

DIVE TEAMS

All partners of secret Paradise are PADI affiliated dive centers and are operated by both local and European dive professionals. A personal interest is taken in promoting scuba diving in the Maldives, through education and awareness about the underwater environment here. Their objective is to encourage underwater conservation and safe diving practices

Photo credit - Ruth Franklin

Photo credit – Nigel Wade

Dives are generally conducted from the beach within an island’s inner reef for beginners or from a local dive boat, a dhoni, for certified divers. Dive sites are chosen daily based on both the weather and current conditions as well as diver ability.

The teams will take you to the best dive spots and willingly introduce you to the characteristics of the underwater world of the Maldives. All offer boat dives, NITROX, night dives and a full range of PADI courses and will always ensure you get the best out of your dive. If you are learning to dive, you can do anything from completing a try dive or just the open water dive section of your PADI Open Water certification to completing the full PADI Open Water certification. Whatever you choose to do you can be assured of fun and safe diving with us and our partners.

Photo credit - Ruth Franklin

Photo credit – Nigel Wade

Secret Paradise Co-Founder, Ruth Franklin a diver herself with over 1500 dives in the Maldives is always happy to share her own diving experiences and is on hand for honest dive advice.

About Secret Paradise

Since 2012 Secret Paradise has been at the forefront of the Maldives local island tourism industry, promoting and supporting guesthouses, dive centres and activity operators based on locally inhabited islands throughout the Maldives archipelago. Offering group and private tours or independent travel packages, Secret Paradise holidays are designed to allow guests to engage with local people and experience the best from a paradise generally known as a luxury resort destination.

Responsible Tourism plays a very large part in what we do. We are mindful of ensuring we promote local tourism in line with Maldivian culture and beliefs and through education of both guests and locals we aim to protect the environment and limit where ever possible any negative impact to local life. We partner NGOs such as Save the Beach and marine charity organisations such as Maldives Whaleshark Research Program to provide opportunities for our guests to learn and support local conservation initiatives.

The benefit of travelling with us is that Secret Paradise guarantees you prompt and efficient personal service. We deliver high standards of service and professionalism and you can rely on Secret Paradise to provide expert local knowledge, clear communication and honest advice.

www.secretparadise.mv

Project AWARE – Dive against Debris in the Canaries and Switzerland

The 4th of March 2017 – was a great day for Project AWARE in the Canary Islands and Switzerland! Two Key Accounts in my Regions organised on the same day a Project AWARE Dive against Debris with outstanding results!

 

 

Dive against Debris Crew Tenerife

One Project AWARE Dive Against Debris event happened in Tenerife in the Canary Islands and has been organised by the Big Fish Dive Center in Los Cristianos. The other event has been organised by Adventure Sports and the Dive Club Rheindive.ch from Frauenfeld & Eschenz in Switzerland.
Both Events were organised almost similar. The Event from Adventure Sports in Switzerland started the evening before with the orientation for the Project AWARE Dive against Debris course – while the event in Tenerife started in the morning of the 4th of March.

It was amazing to see how passionate the participants were involved to clean the Beach underwater in Playas las vistas In Tenerife and in the “Untersee” in Steckborn. Even more impressive was the amount of rubbish who has been removed from the Atlantic and from the Lake of Constance.

Big Fish Tenerife

Data collected:
Divers collected the following amount in Tenerife;
66 KG 

 

 

 

 

Divecorner Frauenfeld

 

 

Divers collected the following amount in Steckborn;
259 KG 

 

 

A big Thank you goes to the organizers in both Countries. Thank you Michal Motylewski and Sandro Krawinkler!

The world and our environment needs more people like you! You are an inspiration for all of us and I hope that with your example we can make a difference and animate more Dive Centres, Divers and citizens of both regions to protect our beloved environment!

 

 

 

 

Dive against Debris Crew Steckborn

How can you help to protect the ocean?

Dive Against Debris is a global marine debris survey – the only data collection effort of its kind that involves volunteer divers collecting, recording and reporting data on marine debris found on the seafloor. Marine debris is a problem that is often considered ‘out of sight – out of mind.’ By sharing data on the debris we find underwater, we’re able to contribute the underwater perspective. It’s really exciting – divers can have a powerful role to play in helping contribute data to influence marine debris policy.
So how can you get started?

1. Download our Dive Against Debris Survey Toolkit – here you’ll find the survey kit for your divers, including a certificate to award to your volunteers.
2. Add your action to our Event Map. Create your My Ocean profile and add your action to our interactive map for our dive community to see. You can also blog and upload photos or videos in My Ocean.

3
. Promote over social media, through your network and communications – don’t forget to use the following hashtags #ProjectAWARE, #DiveAgainstDebris, #MarineDebris, etc.
4. Report your data. Data is critical. Don’t let your dives go to waste. Make sure you report the data on the litter you found.
5. Share the data with your divers by showing them the Dive Against Debris Map.

 
Project AWARE ® can offer you mesh bags and a banner to advertise your action during the day. Each mesh bag comes with a donation of € 6.00. This way, Project AWARE is able to send you some other promotional materials to use during your action (leaflets, posters, stickers, badges, etc.).
Adopt a Dive Site™ is a campaign where Project AWARE launched last year on Earth Day, which basically is repeated Dive Against Debris surveys in one dive site: Project AWARE requires divers adopting a specific dive site to clean up and report data at least once a month. You can find all information on the website www.projectaware.org and if you are interested, just sign up on the website.

Start your Ocean protection today, sign up with adopt a dive site and take an example of the two Dive Centres in Switzerland and in the Canaries! Together we can make a difference and educate the coming generations!

I still believe in us humans and that we can change the current situation, but the time is ticking… Our beautiful environment is counting on you!
#myOcean #myHope

Sharks, Rays and Turtles – Your PADI Speciality with Prodivers Kuredu

Photo by Stefanie Wagner

Photo by Ray van Eeden

You got to love sharks, rays and turtles! In fact, at Kuredu Prodivers we love our residents so much that we’ve compiled everything we know about them and created two specialty courses that you should put on your must-do list: Maldivian Shark & Ray Distinctive Specialty Course, and Sea Turtle Diver Course. These two courses provide the best way for you to learn more about these incredible animals – and of course see them in their natural environment, at reefs around Kuredu.

Photo by Stefanie Wagner

Photo by Stefanie Wagner

During the Maldivian Shark and Ray course you will find out more about the incredible sensory system that sharks and rays possess, learn how to identify the different species, determine their gender and understand the mating behaviour, as well as the need for us to preserve and protect the current populations of sharks and rays. The narrow channels, where the currents flow in and out of the atoll and the deep out reefs around Kuredu are the ideal habitat to get encounters with sharks and rays.

Photo by Marek Machinia

Photo by Marek Machinia

For those of you prefer the sleepy headed sea turtles, the Sea Turtle Course will surely be of interest to you, especially since Kuredu is home to the largest known population of Green Sea Turtles in the Maldives. With over 63 identified individuals resident around the island, this makes it the perfect place to enrol in the course. It offers the chance to learn more about how turtles have adapted and evolved through their fight for survival, and you will also learn how to identify the different species and to distinguish whether they are male and female, and how they reproduce. Are you familiar with the famous Kuredu Caves, a.k.a. Turtle Airport? The course is also available to snorkelers.

Photo by Stefanie Wagner

Photo by Stefanie Wagner

The PADI Maldivian Shark & Ray Distinctive Specialty Course was developed by Prodivers to help increase the awareness about these magnificent creatures. Get in touch with us to find out more about diver qualification requirements for the courses.

Visit www.prodivers.com or drop us an email via info@prodivers.com

Prodivers-logo_263x55

Wow what an amazing day at Alcala!!

Articel and Media supplied by Martin from 12Dive in Tenerife

IMG-20150904-WA0003Wow what an amazing day at Alcala!!

Perfect weather, clear, sunny and hot, just how we all like it here in Tenerife!!
The day started off as you would imagine when you’re organising a big event, trying to sort out where the gazebos were going, when the sound guy’s would arrive, arranging electricity, (the phrase running around like headless chickens come to mind!). Within one hour we had managed to transform Alcala jetty into an organised thing of beauty, music playing, BBQ fired up and everyone smiling, happy, ready and raring to get the clean up on the way and to get as much rubbish as humanly possible!

11169074_10153585370019417_2155641005228847472_oFirst though was the serious bit of paperwork and a full dive briefing conducted in two different languages, by our very own joint owner Alex. Once completed everyone was split into small sized groups and was advised which area they would be cleaning.

Geared up and ready to go diving all volunteers were given a pair of safety gloves and a mesh bag to collect the trash. Group by group at 10 minute intervals, giant strided into the water and descended into the bay, with land support ready to collect anything they found and place it in to the skip.

11998991_10153581682559417_2352410590523200441_nAbout 45 minutes after the first group went down the teams started came back with bag after bag of cans, glass and plastic bottles, rope even tractor tires, sun loungers and large metal frames (from what I don’t know), by the end of the day we ended up collecting approximately 75kg of rubbish.

11951468_10153585366904417_158263078759772866_oThe best part of the day (besides collecting all the rubbish of course) was that after you finished diving there was a great atmosphere and buzz around, people knowing they had done something really special to help the local environment and after all our hard work it was time to relax with a burger and beer or ice tea.

We at 12dive would like to say a massive thank you to everyone involved in this very successful beach and underwater clean up in Alcala!!

 

Special thanks to all our sponsors:

PADI and Project AWARE

Ayuntamieno En Guia de Isora.

Venture Restaurants.

Gourmetland.

Creventy andTenerife shows.

Palm Beach Surfing Experts.

Gomera Producciones.

La Huerta Design.

Oasis FM radio.

CW canaries weekly news paper.

Bubles filling station.

Akustito Cocktails.

Aqualung.

Espiritu de Buceo, with the firedepartment.

Transporte Sanitario for the Ambulance.

Firio Hielo.

Eco oceanos.

MAEL

NA Arte

Tied Tiempo radio

Radio los Gigantes Y Televisión los Gigantes.

Radio Sur.

This time around we are going to be cleaning La Caleta beach on Saturday 12th December from 9.30am. We would like to welcome everyone to come down and help out, divers and non-divers alike. We know this event is going to be bigger and we hope with your help we can make it even more successful than the last.

If you are a certified diver and want to help on the underwater clean up, please bring proof of your certification and insurance, if you don’t have insurance, don’t worry you can purchase a day’s insurance from us for only 6Euros.

Non divers will take part in the beach clean-up, and once we have all finished there will be a BBQ, Bar and Music on site. With an excellent response from people wanting to sponsor the event, check out our 12dive Facebook page for regular updates on what other exciting things will be happening on the day!!!

 

IMG-20150904-WA0003

 

 

 

PIC Online Worksheet and Project AWARE Donations

The PIC Online Worksheet (519DT) is a form designed to help dive centres and instructors collect the information needed to complete the PIC online process when certifying students. As with paper PICs, student divers have the opportunity to support Project AWARE with a donation. However processing Project AWARE donations through PIC Online is not as straight forward as with paper PICs.

PIC Online Worksheet

What is the PIC Online Worksheet and how should it be used?

The PIC Online Worksheet includes 2 sections: Part 1 is where all the information about the certification itself is entered and Part 2 is where your student personal details are captured. The form also includes a Project AWARE section where payment details can be added to support ocean conservation by choosing the AWARE limited edition version of your student certification card. Unlike the paper PIC and Project AWARE insert, the PIC Online Worksheet does not need to be returned to PADI. The worksheet is a tool for you to use to collect student information that need to be entered online as part of the PIC Online process. However, like with any forms used to collect personal data including payment details, it is important to follow best practices in how this data is handled. In practice, it means that if you use the PIC Online worksheet, it’s important to:

  • Be transparent with your students about how you intend to use their data;
  • Keep the data safe and secure at all times;
  • Ensure that the information on the form is securely discarded;

Why is the CVV number field missing?

Even though the PIC Online Worksheet is a tool for you to help you collect all the information needed to process your student certifications online, some information such as the CVV (Card Verification Value) must be collected separately from the rest of the card details due to PCI regulations. We understand this adds to the administrative burden of collecting Project AWARE donations when processing certification cards online. We know some dive centres and instructors are collecting the Project AWARE donation from their students by cash and use the stores or their personal credit card details to process the donation via the PIC Online Process. We understand that this may not be a suitable option for all instructors or dive centres.

How do I make it easy for my students to support Project AWARE?

With more and more PICs now being processed online, less certification cards are being processed with Project AWARE donations. Yet, the threats facing our oceans continue to grow. With these issues in mind, Project AWARE launched 100% AWARE – A Partner Giving Programme exclusively for PADI Members. 100% AWARE means that you can:

  • Streamline PIC Online Process – give all of your students the AWARE certification card, in one easy step. All your students receive a Project AWARE card and you no longer need to process your students’ credit card details through the PIC online process.
  • Effortlessly support ocean protection with every certification.
  • Create loyal customers who appreciate and value your commitment to conservation.
  • Partner with Project AWARE to protect the underwater world your business relies on.
  • Gain positive exposure to a movement of millions of scuba divers worldwide.

2014 Project AWARE certification card

Project AWARE relies on financial support from environmentally concerned divers to achieve its mission and work towards a return to a clean healthy ocean for us today and future generations of divers. Donations through the PADI’s certification process is critical to secure funds to support Project AWARE’s ongoing battle to protect vulnerable shark and ray species and protect marine life from the onslaught of marine debris.

Make it easy for your students to support ocean conservation and make it easy for you to show your commitment to Project AWARE. Become a 100% AWARE partner today! Go to: http://bit.ly/100PercentAWARE to download an application form.

For more information about the PIC Online Worksheet, contact Customer Services or visit the Online Processing Center in the PADI Pros’ Site to download the Step by Step Guide to PIC Online processing.

PADI Member Renewal – Renew Your Support for the Ocean!

2015 PADI Member RenewalThe PADI Member Renewal season is here! Our ocean needs your renewed support and you can help protect the ocean you love with a donation to Project AWARE.

When you make a donation of £15, €15, 20CHF or more with your PADI Member Renewal you’ll receive a limited edition Project AWARE eco mask strap as a special thank you. There’s 4 Easy Ways to Donate:

  1. Setting up Automatic Renewal for the first time? You can add your donation amount online on the PADI Auto Renewals page.
  2. If your Auto Renewal is already set up simply email your PADI Team to add the donation for you.
  3. Choose the donate option when you complete your renewal online.
  4. Complete the PADI Member Renewal 2015 Form which will be mailed directly to you.

Together, with each victory, we’re giving the ocean a voice and placing marine species on the global agenda. Your donation will help protect vulnerable sharks and rays from the biggest threat they face today – overexploitation.

With your support, Project AWARE can take every opportunity to ensure that sharks and rays will not disappear on our watch.

Ask your PADI Team to add the donation for you: customerservices.emea@padi.com

Did you see the news about our historical win at the #CMSCoP11? All 21 shark and ray proposals have been adopted at the 11th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS CoP 11). Thanks for everything you do to make our work possible and help us achieve these significant wins for our ocean. You can read more at: http://bit.ly/CMSCoP11Success

Project AWARE is an award winning non-profit that truly appreciates your support with a commitment to efficiently using your funds for maximum marine conservation impact with innovative global programs. Thanks for renewing your support to ocean conservation as part of your 2015 PADI Member Renewal!

Ocean Film Festival UK Tour

Ocean Film Festival Whale Shark and DiverFor two months only, scuba divers and ocean lovers in the UK can immerse themselves in the wonders of the ocean without getting wet as the International Ocean Film Festival hits UK theatres for the first time.

The festival, which originates in Australia, features a selection of the world’s most captivating ocean-themed short films and is currently being shown in 17 towns and cities across the UK including Bristol in the South West where Project AWARE will be exhibiting.

“We thoroughly enjoyed the Ocean Film Festival Australia earlier this year so we’re really excited to have another opportunity to be a conservation partner of this awe-inspiring film festival.” says Domino Albert, New Media Specialist & Manager Project AWARE UK office. “Book a ticket now and let the Ocean Film Festival UK Tour inspire you to further explore, respect, enjoy and protect our ocean.”

For information, locations and bookings, go to projectaware.org

Photo from the film “The Giant and the Fisherman

Teach the New Dive Against Debris Specialty

Dive Against Debris Specialty Course

This month, Project AWARE is excited to announce the launch of a New Distinctive Specialty course: the Dive Against Debris Distinctive Specialty.

Led by you, the PADI Instructor, now divers of all experience levels can be equipped with better knowledge of debris issues and empowered with the skills to complete ongoing Dive Against Debris surveys.

From planning the dive to reporting the debris data, the Dive Against Debris Distinctive Specialty prepares students to participate and support regular Dive Against Debris surveys, join other surveys, or, in case of more experienced divers, to start surveys of their own.

The course:

  • Educates divers about the messy problem of marine debris – the damage done, what it is, where it comes from, and how divers are part of the solution.
  • Equips divers with the knowledge and skills needed to conduct a Dive Against Debris survey –  considerations for creating a survey dive profile, use of photography, and decision making on what to remove and what to leave behind.
  • Highlights the five steps needed to record and report findings from a Dive Against Debris dive – weigh, sort, record, dispose, and report.
  • Explains how to join the global Project AWARE movement of scuba divers protecting our ocean planet.

If you’re looking to really make a difference and support a growing global army of volunteers combatting ocean trash, then teaching this course is for you. Students will gain a PADI certification which counts towards their PADI Master Scuba Diver and they’ll be well on their way to leading and organizing their own surveys no matter where they live or dive. Plus your Instructor Rating counts towards your own PADI Master Scuba Diving Instructor rating. PADI Course Directors can also apply for the Dive Against Debris Distinctive Specialty Instructor Trainer rating.

Join other leaders around the world and become a Dive Against Debris Distinctive Specialty Instructor today. PADI will generously donate the application fee to Project AWARE. All teaching materials are available free to download.

Leaders into Earths Final Frontier

It’s a cliché but true that the underwater world is Earth’s final frontier, and the PADI family leads its exploration. This is significant, because for the first time in human history, our survival relies in part on exploration. This is because the oceans — inner space — anchor the global ecosystem. We must understand and preserve them to survive. When you teach people to dive, you transform them into explorers, but you also teach them the value of what they see.

Dive Against Debris

Dive Against Debris

The “new life forms” they find underwater thrive in a different world, but we all realise it is not a world apart from our own, but integrally linked to it. Sadly, it’s often a beer can or a patch of anchor-ravaged reef that reminds us how the terrestrial world affects the subaquatic world. Diving breeds an army of advocates who join us in championing the preservation of the underwater world.

New divers form ranks with us because, once they see how fragile yet wonderful the underwater world is, they value it and want to protect it. But our main motivation isn’t diving. It’s our kids. My fantasy (and yours, I suspect) for humanity’s future is a healthy, abundant world in which my children, your children and their children will live. I believe that PADI’s deeper purpose is transforming people into advocate-explorers who passionately examine and protect our fragile seas so that we will see this fantasy become reality. Sci-fi movies are fun, but that’s as far as they go. Diving is also fun, but it’s real. That’s why you make a difference.