Although the children from our local village of Pintu Kota Kecil live on the banks of the Lembeh Strait they have little opportunity to see what lays beneath the surface. Many of the children paddle in the waters and know some basic swimming skills but snorkels and masks are outside of many families' financial means.
The children have learned about the rare and unusual marine life and beautiful corals in the Lembeh Strait through our Green Library initiatives but have never had the chance to see for themselves. This week, with the assistance of Jim Decker, the CEO of Backscatter Underwater Photo and Video, we set about to change that by taking some of the children snorkeling in the Strait. Jim very kindly brought with him some Olympus TG-4 compact cameras so that the children could even take pictures of themselves and what they saw too.
The children joined our snorkeling boat which picked them up from their village jetty and took them to one of the shallow reefs nearby in the Strait. After a briefing on the boat about how to avoid damaging the corals and disturbing the marine life, it was time for action and in they jumped! The children had a fabulous time seeing underwater in the Strait for the first time. The team of Lembeh Resort Dive Guides were kept busy as the children splashed, swam and explored this new underwater world first hand!
After exploring in the water it was time to return to their village and join the beach cleanup which is now a weekly occurrence in Pintu Kota Kecil. The children had boundless energy remaining after snorkeling for collecting marine debris and plastic waste which will be sorted and taken to the Lembeh Foundation Trash Bank.
It is heartwarming for all of us to be able to not only provide the local children with education about Sulawesi's unique wildlife and marine life but to also be able to give them the opportunity to see it for themselves.
Jim Decker shares Lembeh Foundation's ideals on providing youngsters with opportunities which would otherwise be out of reach to them. Jim was thrilled to be able to add to the children's experience by providing underwater cameras. A huge thank you to Jim and Backscatter from all of us!
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