CHANTAL Curtis has been appointed to the new position of Environmental Educator by the Bahamas Reef Environment Educational Foundation (BREEF). The organisation said her experience in teaching and forensic science make her a valuable asset as it seeks to expand citizen science leadership in its coastal field studies and underwater activities.
Ms Curtis first became involved with BREEF as a Teacher Training Workshop participant last year.
“BREEF is proud to add a uniquely qualified environmental educator to work with the thousands of children participating in our field trips to marine and coastal ecosystems, thanks to this new commitment from our long-standing partner, The Moore Bahamas Foundation,” said Casuarina McKinney-Lambert, BREEF’s Executive Director. “We continue to realise our mission by providing students of different ages and backgrounds the opportunity to learn more about why marine conservation is important and to see how we can work together for positive change.”
BREEF’s education initiatives provide public and private school children with hands-on opportunities to learn about the Bahamian marine environment.
Efforts to educate future generations about the Bahamian marine environment range from summer sea camps, with activities such as snorkelling, to outreach and education about sharks in the Bahamas, to virtual coral reef field trips. Additionally, BREEF’s marine conservation workshops have trained over 700 teachers from islands across the Bahamas.
Throughout the year, BREEF offers classroom presentations and field trips for school groups to enhance instruction of marine conservation topics now included in national curricula. Demand for field trips has been increasing, and grant support from The Moore Bahamas Foundation, local affiliate of The Moore Charitable Foundation founded by Louis Bacon in 1992, allows more students to experience the marine environment first-hand.
Ms Curtis will play a leading part in these learning experiences and co-ordinate and implement coastal field trips to Jaws Beach, Bonefish Pond and other key places around the islands as part of ongoing National Coastal Awareness Month activities. She will also collaborate with Dr Demian Chapman and Mark Bond for shark education in May.
This summer, the BREEF team will be particularly busy with sea camps on New Providence, Eleuthera and San Salvador and with a Marine Conservation Teacher Training Workshop on San Salvador.