youth awareness activities
Students learn about the causes and threats of climate change and pollution affecting the planet and their island - their lives. Consequently, they better understand the importance of conserving and protecting the fragile biodiversity of Carriacou, in particular sea turtles, birds, mangroves, beaches, and overall interdependence of island ecosystems.
Participating students discover how solid waste pollution can severely affect human life, and that many turtles, birds and other wildlife are already on the brink of extinction caused by the contribution of anthropogenic actions to Climate Change. A key sentence during our brainstorming sessions was: “I can be the difference if I let it start with ME!”, proposing a radical change in personal behaviour by avoiding the consumption of products wrapped in plastics, as well as developing ways of up-cycling, reducing and reusing stuff.
The follow up was the production of informative posters demanding that island people keep the Carriacou marine environment free of garbage. They introduced their work to the media, local TV and a popular Internet channel (Pure Grenada). They also placed their posters in key locations (the local fish and vegetable markets) where they are likely to be seen by local persons. The young students are now effectively empowered into social action to promote conservation!
As a way to conserve the natural habitat of birds and nesting turtles, strengthening the protective natural vegetation barrier along the coastline, mitigating sandy beach erosion against tsunami, storms and sea level rise due to global warming/climate change, students, teachers, local community members, KIDO staff and volunteers planted, to date, 5,481 red mangrove propagules, 300 with bamboo encasements, in the coastal mangrove restoration area of Petit Carenage. This operation is ongoing and is supported and assisted by different members of the population of Carriacou.
Coastal clean-up sessions were undertaken at almost every field trip, clearing plastic waste, debris, wires, ropes, discarded nets and even Sargassum at Petit Carenage and Sparrow Bay turtle nesting beaches (with a specially assigned international classification of debris system). The clean-up also aimed to protect the hatchlings from dangerous entanglements during their crawl from their nest to the sea.