Marine Ecology Camp marks 10th anniversary

Central Caribbean Marine Institute’s Little Cayman Research Centre will host its 10th annual Caribbean Marine Ecology Camp.

The session that lasts from 7 August to 14 August will mark the 10th anniversary for the camp.

In celebration of this milestone, CCMI has announced its pledge of philanthropic support of the Ball Foundation to fund the Edmund F. and Virginia H. Ball Caribbean Marine Ecology Camp for the next 10 years. The anniversary will be further celebrated with the introduction of a newly developed curriculum, activities and counsellors.

This year the camp has enrolled 14 students; 10 Caymanians and four Americans. The events and activities in which the students will participate have been developed to provide them with a solid foundation of knowledge in marine ecosystems and conservation schemes.

Activities will include SCUBA diving, snorkelling, kayaking and hiking along with various other exciting opportunities.

The camp leader will be Tara Bonebrake. Having who graduated with a Masters of Art for Teaching in Washington University, she is an 8th grade science teacher at Mary Institute and St. Louis Country Day School. During her vacation time, Ms Bonebrake likes to explore her two passions, sustainability and marine science.

She has travelled around the world to study her love of the ocean and the creatures within. Ms Bonebrake is a firm believer that it is only through education and understanding that people will come to realise how precious and fragile coral reef ecosystems are.

In return, all who visit to study and learn about our reefs will then become ambassadors for restoring, conserving, and sharing their experiences with others. Sally Coppage, CCMI’s education officer, will be assisting Ms Bonebrake along with Rusty Walton, from Cayman Brac.

The Central Caribbean Marine Institute was incorporated in 1998 as a non-profit organization. It was later established as an international charitable organization, after becoming incorporated in the Cayman Islands in 2002 and in the UK 2004.

Since its beginning CCMI has contributed to the efforts of understanding changing coral reef and tropical marine environments. Its research and education programs have established a solid foundation for future reef education and awareness and for students and researchers around the world.

For more information on the 2009 Edmund F. and Virginia H. Ball Caribbean Marine Ecology Camp and/or other research, education, outreach and conservation initiatives of the Central Caribbean Marine Institute, please visit our website at www.reefresearch.org.

Activities will include SCUBA diving, snorkelling, kayaking and hiking along with various other exciting opportunities

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