SEE Turtles is a unique small organization with a big impact. They support efforts to protect sea turtles in partnership with organizations around the world by providing funds for important nesting beach projects, offering opportunities for travelers to support conservation, and educating people about threats to sea turtles as well as solutions.
As part of the Pacsafe Turtle Fund, we are supporting SEE Turtles this year with one of threes grants, aimed at helping fund global conservation efforts. We sat down with co-founder President Brad Nahill recently to see what it means to receive the grant, what they plan to do with it, what their biggest challenges are, and what their proudest achievement is to date. Here’s a little insight, into the amazing efforts of SEE Turtles.
Last year, SEE Turtles surpassed $1 million in benefits for sea turtle conservation and local communities through our conservation tours and programs. These funds are helping small community-based organizations conduct their research and conservation efforts and help communities near turtle hotspots to benefit from their protection.
It is gratifying to be selected for the Pacsafe Turtle Fund grant. The support is helping to expand our Too Rare To Wear campaign to Asia, where the trade of turtle shell products threatens the critically endangered hawksbill sea turtle. The funds from Pacsafe are very important to our ability to reach people but Pacsafe is going beyond just funding our work by helping to reach new audiences with our messages. The grant will also allow us to do the first global overview of this trade in decades.
Despite the end of the legal international trade of products made from hawksbill shells, Asia continues to have a huge trade. These products are available to purchase in China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Papua New Guinea, and Japan, where the sale is still legal. This grant will allow us to bring Too Rare To Wear to the region, recruiting tour operators, dive shops, and local partners to help end the demand for these products.
There’s no one single challenge, it’s a bunch of big and growing problems. The two biggest challenges continue to be poaching of their eggs, meat, and shells continue and get caught in fishing gear. But climate change and plastic pollution are rapidly becoming huge threats that all sea turtles face around the world.
To learn more about SEE Turtles, what they do and how you can help, head to their websitehere.
If you’d like to know more about the Pacsafe Turtle Fund, headhere.
Tim Hawken is an Australian writer who enjoys surfing, Indian food and romantic midnight strolls to the beer fridge. He has clocked up visits to 23 countries on 5 continents (and counting). Find out more about his weird world by heading tohis website, or following him onInstagram andTwitter.
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