The Daily Herald writes that Netherlands World Wildlife Fund WNF ranger fundraiser for the coral reefs of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba has generated over 153,000 euros for the purchase of, among other things, a research vessel for sea turtles. WNF announced on Monday that its rangers and many other children in the Netherlands had raised a grand total of 153,557 euros for the fundraising event “Healthy coral, help all!” for the protection of the Caribbean Netherlands coral reefs.
The 26,000-euro research vessel that has been bought from the proceeds enables staff of the local nature foundations to tag and check sea turtles, assist sick and wounded animals and better supervise the beaches where the turtles lay their eggs. Nature conservationists can also gather more data to determine local trends in growth figures, health status, the number of turtles and their habitat. According to the WNF, research forms the foundation of effective nature protection.
Other projects that will be funded with the proceeds include beach clean-up events, additional training for the staff of the local nature foundations and information about sustainability for the local population.
The young rangers and their friends were very creative and enthusiastic in generating donations, the WNF stated in a press release. Cupcakes were baked, yard sales were held and children sold handmade items. One young man turned his living room into a restaurant, while a girl created an obstacle course in her yard in which classmates could participate. Schools organised sponsor runs and clean-up events. The six best and most eye-catching participants will be invited to a very important person (VIP) day soon, where the winner will be announced of a trip to Bonaire to explore the reefs and observe the results of the fundraising event.
“The coral in the Caribbean Netherlands is among the most beautiful in the entire Caribbean. Aside from the stunning corals, the coral reefs are a place for young fish to grow and a meeting place for all sorts of fish,” the WNF stated. The coral reefs are relatively healthy now, but they are threatened by pollution, climate change, acidification of the sea water, increasing tourism and damaging fishery techniques. The ranger fundraiser makes it possible for WNF to financially support a number of specific actions that will benefit the corals and sea turtles.