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Coral Cay Conservation

»Monday, May 11,2009

Grace QuitonMy experience as volunteer and trainee for Coral Cay Conservation inspired me to pursue marine conservation work that eventually led me to start my current volunteer project. For more than a month, I underwent training and volunteer work doing underwater surveys, reef checks and community outreach activities in CCC survey sites in Southern Leyte.

It was there that I found the missing link, that particular combination I was looking for—science and arts, the practical and the beautiful, all in the natural environment I was most fascinated with. It was life changing.
I came to CCC in March 2007. It was like learning science all over again.

 

CCC VolunteersAt first, I was apprehensive. I told the volunteer teachers I had no marine science background whatsoever, but they did not see this as a hindrance and patiently proceeded to help me learn about corals, fish and surveying methods. I realised that all I actually needed was an open mind and an interest to learn. It didn’t matter what background volunteers come from. I met volunteers who were fashion designers, museum curators, and engineers, and they did the conservation work amazingly well. In fact, they were equally, if not, more passionately precise than many scientists I knew. I realized that all I actually needed was an open mind and an interest to learn. It didn’t matter what background volunteers come from. I met volunteers who were fashion designers, museum curators, and engineers, and they did the conservation work amazingly well. In fact, they were equally, if not, more passionately precise than many scientists I knew.

The CCC experience also catered to my love for the environment. I was out there diving, exploring and surveying. It was just the type of learning I’ve longed for—the one that took place outside of the four walls of a  classroom and that was easy to share with the community. Best of all, it opened my eyes to so many amazing, beautiful things about my own country that I’ve taken for granted all these years.

And then there was that wonderful opportunity to work with CCC volunteers. They had that passion that was too infectious to ignore. And I saw others transform and catching on as well. It made me see that  conservation work can operate much like a family and can be a socially meaningful experience for the community.

Volunteers With Local ChildrenSince CCC, I wanted to share that kind of experience to others— friends, family and my own community. I realized I could use whatever I have, no matter how small they may be, to support conservation work. This  eventually led me to put up my volunteer project—a non-profit organization called “Ocean-action Resource Center, Inc.”

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