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How you can help provide Safe Water in Indonesian villages

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Since the COVID19 lockdown, unemployment is wide spread in North Sulawesi where dive tourism is the main source of income. With many families living pay check to pay check, the local people are suffering extreme financial hardship.

Murex Dive Resorts have launched a “Safe Water Initiative” to ensure that their local villages have access to clean and safe drinking water throughout this period.

Safe Water in North Sulawesi

It is common in Indonesia that households have ‘gallon’ (19 liter) water bottles and dispensers in their homes. These bottles cost around ID75,000 per month for a small family which is a sizeable expense. As a sustainable and ongoing affordable solution, Murex’s Safe Water Initiative aims to roll out Nazava water filtration systems to local communities.

Why are the Filters Needed During COVID-19?

The major concern in North Sulawesi is that as finances become tighter for the local population (which they inevitably will continue to do so), people try to save money by using unfiltered water. In North Sulawesi, food is not the primary concern as people can fish and there are large amounts of fruits and vegetables grown locally but safe water is a different issue.

There is a lack of understanding about what water is safe and what is not, and people often do not boil water for long enough to kill all bacteria. If there is a cholera or typhoid outbreak then there is little defence against this – especially now at a time when medical services are stretched beyond their means.

Murex owners have privately funded 100 filter units but more are needed and they are reaching out to divers around the world to help. Many more units are needed to ensure that everyone in the local communities has ongoing access to fresh, safe drinking water. The filter systems can be used for up to two years before the filter needs changing which means that as the economy and situation here deteriorate, access to safe water will not.

Sarah Wormald, Head of Public Relations at Murex Dive Resorts comments:

We hope that divers who have visited the region before, and met the amazing locals will want to give back and make a donation to help. Safe drinking water is something we take for granted in developed countries but in North Sulawesi it’s an expense which many people just can’t afford now that they have no income due to COVID19. Murex has always looked for ways to support local communities when times are tough and COVID19 is no exception. Clean, safe water is paramount and the Navaza filters are a way to ensure this. The filter systems cost just 20 Euros each and that can mean the difference between health or sickness – or worse.

This is a link to a video from Social ImpaKt about the Nazava filter which explains more about how it works:

How You Can Help

If you are a diver and would like to support communities in Indonesia you can make donations by bank transfer to the following account, please state “Water Filter” or “Navaza” on your transfer. 100%  of donations go to purchase water filters. You may also email Murex directly for more information or to confirm you donation at: reservations@MurexDive.com

Bank: BANK CENTRAL ASIA (BCA)
Bank Address:
Kawasan Mega Mas Blok E No.8.
Jalan Pierre Tendean,
Manado
95113
Indonesia

Beneficiary / Account Name : Manado Underwater Explorations
Account No : 8295.9595.48
Account Currency: Euro
Swift Code : CENAIDJA

A Message From Murex Dive Resorts

 Thank you in advance to anyone who makes a donation, all donations are very greatly appreciated. May we also take this opportunity to wish you all well and we look forward to being able to welcome divers back to Murex Dive Resorts in the not too distant future.

If you have any questions regarding travel to North Sulawesi, diving in the Bunaken Marine Park and Bangka Island, or about our COVID flexible booking policy, please contact us on: reservations@murexdive.com or visit our website: www.MurexDive.com

Sarah Ann Wormald is a writer and PADI Master Instructor with a passion for underwater photography and conservation. Sarah is the author of “Diving in Indonesia” and “Diving in South East Asia” (Tuttle Publishing). With over 20 years of diving experience, Sarah has dived all over the Indonesian Archipelago and South East Asia. Find out more at www.MurexDive.com.

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PADI meets with Maldivian Ministry to confirm protection of sharks

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Over recent weeks, there has been speculation about the possibility of the Maldivian government lifting the ban on shark fishing in the country’s waters. PADI®, and the dive industry at large, were instrumental in establishing these protections over a decade ago.

With concern for the continued protection of sharks in the Maldives, the PADI organisation and Project AWARE®, along with 200 concerned local and international stakeholders opposing the lifting of the shark fishing ban, called on the government to continue to enforce the legal protections of sharks. PADI staff met with Maldivian Ministry of Fisheries, Marine Resources, and Agriculture Zaha Waheed to reinforce the position of the dive community and critical role sharks play in dive tourism.

In those meetings, Minister Waheed assured PADI that the Ministry of Fisheries, Marine Resources, and Agriculture has no intentions to lift the ban on shark fishing. She affirmed that they remain committed to sustainable and responsible management of fisheries and marine resources in the Maldives. On 20 April 2021, the Ministry of Fisheries, Marine Resources, and Agriculture released a statement asserting that “the Maldives does not intend to permit a targeted shark fishery in the Maldives.”

“Sharks are a dominant force in dive tourism in the Maldives. We congratulate the Maldives’s commitment to their ongoing protection,” says Drew Richardson, President and CEO of PADI Worldwide. “The Maldives continues to lead by example, among the most progressive countries on this critical issue.”

There are currently 17 shark sanctuaries in the world; the first established in Palau in 2009 and others in popular dive destinations including French Polynesia, Honduras, The Bahamas and several others in the Caribbean. The Maldives shark sanctuary was established in 2010 and covers 916,000 km2 (353,000 square miles).

Tourism accounts for an estimated 25 percent of Maldives’ GDP (according to 2014 figures), with diving and snorkeling being the most popular tourism activity. Prior to the formation of the Maldivian sanctuary, shark fishing was worth US$0.7 million to the Maldives’ economy, compared to US$2.3 million from shark tourism. In 2018, the shark sanctuary increased dive-trip demand in the Maldives by 15 percent, raising an additional US$6 million. Consumer research indicates that any re-opening of a Maldives shark fishery could potentially decrease dive tourism demand by over 50 percent, which could result in a loss of US$24 million.

Sharks are some of the most endangered species in the ocean, with recent research showing that the global number of oceanic sharks has declined by 71 percent. Over a third of shark and ray species are threatened, facing an increased threat of extinction, primarily due to overfishing.  There are an estimated 600,000 shark watchers globally spending $314 million per year and directly supporting 10,000 jobs. Research indicates these figures are expected to rise as global tourism returns to pre-pandemic levels.

As part of its commitment to ocean conservation, PADI will continue to stand up for sharks and advocate for their protection. For more information on responsible shark tourism, read Project AWARE’s Guide to Best Practices. To learn more about PADI’s efforts and how you can join the community of PADI Torchbearers working to save the ocean, visit padi.com/conservation.

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Miscellaneous Blogs

The BiG Scuba Podcast… with Rosemary Lunn

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Ian and Gemma chat among themselves and are also are joined by well-known Dive Industry Professional Rosemary Lunn.

We talk about dive fitness and entering the CrossFit 2021 open games and being members of our local CrossFit Box. You can also listen to our new member of the team – Rosemary Lunn – answer some scuba diving questions.

Find out more about Rosemary at www.tumc.co.uk.


Find more podcast episodes and information at the new www.thebigscuba.com  website and on most social platforms @thebigscuba 

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Explore the amazing triangle of Red Sea Reefs - The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone on board the brand new liveaboard Big Blue.  With an option to add on a week at Roots Red Sea before or after. 

Strong currents and deep blue water are the catalysts that bring the pelagic species flocking to these reefs. The reefs themselves provide exquisite homes for a multitude of marine life.  The wafting soft corals are adorned with thousands of colourful fish. The gorgonian fans and hard corals provide magnificent back drops, all being patrolled by the reef’s predatory species.

£1475 per person based on double occupancy.  Soft all inclusive board basis, buffet meals with snacks, tea and coffee always available.  Add a week on at Roots Red Sea Resort before or after the liveaboard for just £725pp.  Flights and transfers are included.  See our brochure linked above for the full itinerary.

This trip will be hosted by The Scuba Place.  Come Dive with Us!

Call 020 3515 9955 or email john@thescubaplace.co.uk

www.thescubaplace.co.uk

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