APIA: The Sa Moana Folauga or Moana Conservation Outreach was officially launched this week by Conservation International (CI), Samoa Voyaging Society (SVS), the Government of Samoa and partners.
Led by Conservation International and the Disney Moana this will be the “first-of-its kind” collaboration that will bring sustainable environmental and cultural stewardship education to Samoan coastal communities on the Gaualofa, Samoa’s very own traditional double-hulled voyaging canoe. The project is a collaborative effort between CI, SVS, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Samoa Conservation Society, Youth Climate Action Network and the Center of Samoa Studies at the National University of Samoa along with other partners.
Captain Fealofani Bruun, her crew, along with a team of local environmental and cultural educators will visit communities on the Gaualofa to host free outdoor screenings of Disney’s Moana accompanied with interactive trainings on basic coastal and marine management principles, Samoan traditional voyaging, and cultural heritage site appreciation and preservation. “This is a very exciting project for all partners involved and for our local conservation efforts. We are collaborating in the true spirit of conservation and utilizing an iconic tradional platform, our very own voyaging Va’a, in which to communicate these stewardship messages with our communities,” said SVS President and Marine Program Director of CI’s Pacific Oceanscape program, Mr. Schannel van Djiken.
The Gaualofa will drop anchor in six locations where the crew and local experts and educators will work with the communities on conservation efforts on the ground. “We have brought together a very strong team of local conservation professionals from Government and NGOs, with varying backgrounds both in terrestrial and marine experience, and cultural heritage academics, so we have a very exciting programme planned,” said van Dijken.
The programme was officially launched on Tuesday in Apia, followed by the sail to Satitoa, Aleipata. For the next two weeks the Gaualofa will drop anchor at Poutasi, Manono, Salelologa, Fagamalo and Asau. Interested members of the public can follow the journey or take part by visiting Conservation International Samoa and Samoa Voyagers Facebook pages.
This programme is also supported by the Samoa Hotel Association, Okeanos, US embassy, Eveni Pacific, Orator, Spacific Marketing.
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