[Coral-List] Education is not the only key!

Trudi van Ingen trudivaningen at yahoo.com
Tue Mar 14 07:10:15 EST 2006

I fully agree with DeeVon Quirolo that more is needed than
only education. Although education and awareness about the
importance of coral reefs is important, the more the
better, other actions need to be taken as well. I have
worked in a coastal area in Africa where fishers used
dynamite. At the design of the project it was thought that
education and awareness of the villagers would be the
solution, but the reality was far more complicated. The
villagers of the coastal communities did not need to be
educated because they appeared to be perfectly aware of the
importance of the coral reefs for their fisheries. The ones
that needed to be educated were moreover the local and
national authorities responsible for policies and law
enforcement. They needed to see the importance of the coral
reefs for the livelihoods of the coastal communities before
they took the measures needed (also after a lot of
lobbying, negotiation, etc.). 

Trudi van Ingen

PS Education and awareness stays important to influence the
public opinion, which is a powerful tool for influencing
policy makers.

--- DeeVon Quirolo <deevon at bellsouth.net> wrote:

> Reef Relief and many other conservation 
> organizations have been educating students and 
> other targeted audiences for years.  Our Coral 
> Reef Teacher Guide by Wendy Weir is available 
> online with complimentary slide shows, posters, 
> and supporting materials.  Our school program has 
> been introducing 4th grade students in the Keys 
> to the coral reef ecosystem for the past 10 
> years.  However, that alone will not build the 
> political will to upgrade inadequate sewage, stop 
> agricultural runoff, etc.  You need to get 
> involved in the very unpopular strategy of policy 
> guidance to make political change in the real 
> world.  And most likely, you will lose funding 
> and support from the very government agencies 
> responsible for protecting coral reefs for speaking up
> for coral reefs.
> DeeVon Quirolo, executive director, Reef Relief
> At 07:29 AM 3/13/2006, Paul Stampfl wrote:
> >Dear Members of this in the last weeks very interesting
> List,
> >
> >Educate the kids! (And as by-product their 
> >parents) This is the most promising and probably 
> >only solution available to change the mind frame.
> >
> >Important is that we “feed” the kids again and again
> (it’s like advertising)
> >
> >We should get the schools, the teachers and most 
> >importantly the kids involved.
> >
> >For a start;
> >
> >Let’s put together a workshop (there might be 
> >already enough suitable educational material out 
> >there) and visit the schools.  I am sure there is one
> around your corner!
> >
> >One could set up a website adjusted to the needs 
> >of the kids and the syllabus and accompany the 
> >kids throughout the school year or school 
> >career. Kids like competitions;    set out some 
> >prizes and let them compete for it in a quiz (within and
> between schools)
> >
> >Important is, that they have a contact / a face 
> >they can communicate with and (as a highlight) 
> >talk to them personally from time to time.
> >
> >We could search for a mascot (Nemo is probably 
> >already protected by some copyright law”. Run a 
> >campaign where the kids (schools) have the 
> >option to choose between different mascots, come 
> >up with a name, let them paint 
 you get the point!
> >
> >This kind of effort would need some coordination 
> >and will therefore raise a range of issues. - 
> >What kind of administrative framework is 
> >required? Who e.g. would host the website? Is it 
> >necessary to set up a new (independent!) 
> >platform? What is about the Kids that are not 
> >blessed with high speed internet access? Sponsoring?
> etc.
> >
> >
> >I am sure you have some input and answers.
> >
> >Paul
> >
> >
> >Find the home of your dreams with eircom net property
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> >
> >
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