Notice

Scuba divers, sailors, surfers, cruisers and other sea-users have supported six UK marine conservation charities and projects through Sea-Changers’ latest round of funds. The money, raised by sea-users wanting to contribute to the marine environment they love, was allocated by Sea-Changers, the marine conservation fund-raising charity, through its latest grant allocation process, which saw grants ranging from £500 to £650 to six projects right across the UK.

 

The chosen projects are of a practical nature such as: training of citizen inspectors to assist with enforcement of fishing regulations; education projects in schools and communities around the UK; marine habitat surveys and research to understand more about the health of important species.

Grants have been made to:

  • Black Fish – to fund training of Citizens Inspectors to assist officers directly in enforcement to ensure compliance with regulations on shellfish harvesting along the North West coast.
  • Weymouth and Portland Sub Aqua Club - Worbarrow Bay marine habitat survey.
  • Fin Fighters – anti shark fin consumption campaigns in Sheffield and Brighton.
  • Surfers Against Sewage - training of their network of regional volunteers.
  • Blue Ocean Planet – recruitment and support of 6 new schools in their marine education programme.
  • Sea Watch Foundation - training courses and cetacean surveys in West Wales.

Sea-Changers was established as a charity in May 2011, with the sole purpose of raising funds for UK marine conservation projects, Since then, individuals and businesses all around the country have been joining a growing body of ‘sea-changers’ keen to protect the seas around the UK by supporting this important cause.

About the projects funded:

Black Fish - Citizens Inspectors

Black Fish is training new Citizen Inspectors in the UK, with the first four-day training having taken place 26-29 April in Nottingham. The aim is for port and market inspections to commence in late Summer 2015 for at least two weeks with 6 trained citizen inspectors. 

Weymouth and Portland Sub Aqua Club (WDSAC) - Worbarrow Bay marine habitat survey

In addition to general marine habitat surveying, Seasearch recording has focused on protected species such as crawfish and pink seafans with a specific consistent methodology. This project will seek to to extend the baseline of the Dorset Wildlife Trust’s Worbarrow Bay study of 2003-2005 and investigate changes in the seafans since then. The divers are trained in the Seasearch survey protocols and are experienced in underwater survey work. Support from the Sea-Changers grant funding will enable WDSAC to undertake multiple dives on the reef and carry out the temperature monitoring as part of the project.

Fin Fighters - The  Fin Fighters Campaign

The Fin Fighters movement is growing fast. They have been approached by volunteers from all around the country who want Fin Fighters to work on building a campaign and raising awareness of shark consumption in their city. Sea-Changers will provide funding for their next two big campaigns – Sheffield and Brighton; where they will run educational events and creative programs that are aimed at generating as much public participation as possible. Their work seeks to gather widespread support for condemning the sale and distribution of shark fins in these cities through petitioning and working with the local councils as well as positively engaging with the businesses that sell fins.

Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) - Regional Training Event

The project will train 60 individuals who will then go on to educate many thousands of members of the public about how they can come together to care for the coastline. The project aims to ensure that there is a passionate network of young volunteers caring for the UK’s coastline. SAS already has a team of 60 regional volunteers based throughout coastal regions of the UK. Supported and trained by SAS they are responsible for the protection of their local coastal habitat. Working with their community they take a holistic approach to the protection of their designated area through beach cleans, environmental education talks and community information campaigns.

Blue Ocean Planet (BOP)  ‘Our Oceans, Our Life’ Education Programme

BOP aim to recruit 6 new schools to take part in their ocean protector programme. The objective then will be to teach the children and the schools how to set up their own school projects and how to take part in local activities, i.e. Beach Cleans, Workshops, ID Nature days and events. The aim is to show ‘connectedness’ and ‘cause and effect’. BOP will then continue to mentor schools and pupils after projects.

Sea Watch Foundation - training courses and cetacean surveys  

The Sea Watch Foundation will receive funding for two training courses and cetacean surveys. They want to give Welsh Sea Watcher volunteers the opportunity to take part in cetacean photo-id surveys and gain vital field skills, while contributing to the organisation’s vital ongoing data collection programme so that more can be learned and understood about the cetacean populations in UK waters.

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