Carnival donates $75K for reef conservation

Cruise line’s donation to go toward Little Cayman marine research facility

The philanthropic wing of Carnival Cruise Lines has donated $75,000 for the Central Caribbean Marine Institute’s coral reef conservation and education programs on Little Cayman. 

The funding from the Carnival Foundation will go toward research on endangered coral species and to develop a program for local schools on reef conservation. Carnival is one of the cruise lines pushing for a new cruise pier, hotly debated because of potential damage to the reef off the George Town waterfront. 

Central Caribbean Marine Institute president Carrie Manfrino, in a press release, said, “CCMI’s overarching goal is to increase the sustainability of critically endangered coral species, and Carnival Foundation’s grant will enable us to target and improve the restoration of corals – including those recently impacted by the ‘bleaching effects’ of warm water in the Caribbean – and through our development of coral nurseries and other restoration work.” 

Carnival Foundation Director Linda Coll, in a press statement, said, “Carnival Foundation is honored to support an organization that is focused on conservation through the education of local children, both of which are areas that we are very passionate about. 

“We strive to be good global citizens, and working with CCMI enables us to help preserve and restore the beautiful environmentally vital coral reefs that characterize the Cayman Islands.” 

Ms. Manfrino explained that the research will be part of the Cayman Ocean Science Academy at the Little Cayman Research Centre to develop a science curriculum called Raise a Reef. The program aims to work with 200 students with activities around conserving Cayman’s coral reefs. 

The program will give teachers access to an online game, activity guide and a field guide to help students learn about local endangered coral species, she said.