Coaching the Next Generation of Ocean Guardians.
We believe that getting outdoors is the first step to building a relationship with nature and changing our behavior in how we interact with the planet. But nature-based oportunities are a privledge, and few have access to it.
For the majority of people living in Cape Town’s coastal townships, this is their reality. Even when the ocean may be less than 500 meters away, many have not had the opportunity to swim and experience it in a positive light. The lack of local community connection to the ocean comes from a complex blend of breaking down post-apartheid social barriers and lack of funding going towards creating safe introductory water experiences.
We are working to change this with the help of I AM WATER (IAW), a South African based NGO whose mission is to connect disenfranchised youth living in coastal communities to the ocean.
IAW has a holistic approach to integrating ocean conservation into the communities they work with by running two-day Ocean Guardian workshops, implementing direct programs into schools, leading river clean-ups and running open ocean workshops where whole families are invited to participate. IAW is working with community leaders and the youth to make the ocean an accessible experiences for everyone.
Freyja is partnering with I AM WATER on a shared vision of implementing an ocean literacy program in the South African public school curriculum. Together, we are researching and building a project and management plan.
Environmental Education & outdoor experiences go hand-in-hand in combating climate change
This Project is Run in Two Parts
I AM WATER
- Runs ocean conservation workshops for SA grade 7 youth living in underserved coastal communities (2,981 students participated in 2018/2019)
- Engages with local schools by giving talks and presentations to student bodies and supporting teachers (16,000 students reached 2018/2019)
- Provides transformational educational experiences through physical interactions with the sea and wildlife
- Provides safe spaces where youth overcome deeply embedded cultural fears of the ocean and are more likely to appreciate the ocean as a place to protect
- Carries out beach clean-ups with youth in order to protect Marine Protected Areas (MPAs)
- Employs and trains locals to run ocean programs and act as community ocean leaders in low-income communities (60 IAW coaches employed 2018/2019)
- Freyja is working with IAW to design a project management plan and proposal to implement an ocean literacy program in the South African public school system