About a week after our Green Coco raffle, the Marquesan school kids went to Chile. (The Green Coco community fundraised nearly $2100 to gift to the non-profit Motu Haka, which is coordinating the school kids’ marine reserves. Read more on our post her)
Rapa Nui has a strong Polynesian heritage and ancient connections with the Marquesas Islands. The school kids in Rapa Nui announced the launch of their own EMMA, using the Marquesan model as their guideline! There was amazing sharing between the kids.
After Rapa Nui, the school kids traveled to Valparaiso in Chile. They were impressed by how cold it was!! The conference was a global event about marine protected areas. The kids were introduced to wide applause as “the youngest managers of marine protected areas” in the world. They were invited to perform at the opening ceremony of the conference with song and dance:
Pascal and other organizers spent their days at the conference while the kids went sightseeing… but they came to the conference during key moments, such as the partnering of the Pukatai EMMAs with the Big Ocean network of protected areas — an exciting development for everyone, and an opportunity to expand the EMMA concept throughout the world. (EMMAs are educational marine managed areas run by school kids, developed by Marquesans).
Pascal reported that having the kids at the conference changed everyone’s attitude. During many conferences, scientists make a call to action to “support the future generation”. Well, here they were, pledging to work alongside the scientists. Pascal said this was a very emotional realization for all the participants.