The past year has been a whirlwind for Sally Snow and the LAMAVE team, consisting of meetings with government agencies, workshops with local stakeholders, and filming above and underwater to make the most effective briefing film possible in hopes of mitigating human impact on resident Philippines marine turtles, the goal of LAMAVE’s second CMG Action Grant. The first film, “Apo Island Snorkel Briefing and Interpretation Film,” was completed and delivered this May.
Over the past year, Sally met with local and national agencies to approve the videos and hear their suggestions on elements to include the films. A final resolution of snorkel and scuba diving guidelines for turtle interaction in May 2019.
On beautiful Apo Island, Sally and LAMAVE met with local dive groups, village councils and leaders, and tour guides to ensure the community approved the film and was able to provide their input on content. These meetings helped identify the 35 locals who would eventually appear in the briefing film, and who now have an investment in these guidelines and in the ongoing conservation efforts central to LAMAVE’s mission.
The work didn’t end at video production. An art attack workshop held in collaboration with LAMAVE and youth on the island brought together more than 50 children, all under the age of 18, who produced a series of twenty painted wooden turtles. Each turtle features at least one message about the turtles, relating to threats, their values to local livelihood, facts about the turtles and their biology, and snorkeling guidelines. The workshop aimed to educate youth on the value of these amazing animals and create lasting messages to be displayed on the island. This amazing art project will launch in August 2019, alongside the release of the briefing video.
There is still much to come for the LAMAVE team. The second film, “Responsible Tourism Guidelines and Citizen Science Video,” saw some production delays as LAMAVE and partners continue to work on the citizen science collaboration’s research and outreach. The delay worked in LAMAVE’s favor, as the success of the briefing film led Protected Area Management Board to request a second briefing film dedicated to scuba diving tourists and their applicable guidelines, which can be shot alongside the citizen science film. The films will be shot this July and August, with an expected delivery of late August.