The weekend was filled with many adventures. The first involved just making it out of Nassau. Our group and all of our dive gear made it on the last two flights of the day! As soon as we arrived on the island, we found out there was a SCUBA tank scarcity on the island! A big dive group was working on their certification causing one of the main compressors on the island and all the tanks at Forfar to be busy almost the entire day. Luckily, our friends from Greenforce were able to save the day by lending us tanks that Forfar filled for us. Thanks again Greenforce and Forfar!
The water was cold, but the children were brave and suited up, some of them in nothing but their bathing suits. They have come so far along; most of these children were terrified of the water before this and now many of them taking a giant stride in dive gear off the boat is nothing. We stayed out on the water until dusk. Although YME has worked with the Andros Environmental Ambassador team before this weekend was the launch of the Empower Youth Through Coral Conservation Project that was initiated through the EDGE fellowship from the Zoological Society of London that Nikita received earlier this year. When not in the water the students spent time working on their coral ID and playing leadership development games.
All in all a good weekend that couldn’t have happened without the committed students and people of Andros. A special thanks goes out to Prescott and Geneva for all your help and for rescuing us from the side of the road when we ran out of gas!
**After the program our Environmental Ambassadors in Andros planned and coordinated their own cook out fundraiser to buy their own dive gear. Our Cat Island boys were so enthusiastic they have already found around 20 students interested in joining YME and becoming SCUBA certified.