Each year, part of the proceeds of the FTCC Gala Dinner goes to a charity foundation. This year, we chose to donate to:
OCEANS FOR ALL FOUNDATION
Founded in 2019 by David Martin, an underwater film maker, shark specialist and environmental activist, and Thibault Salaun, a luxury hospitality and yachting industry entrepreneur, OCEANS FOR ALL FOUNDATION’s mission is to engage the local community through marine environmental education and action.
Phuket, and Thailand, being ranked as some of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, are still implementing numerous developments in order to increase their attractiveness. In Phuket specifically, almost all activity, all business, all lifestyle is related to the surrounding ocean. An outstanding treasure of beauty, resources and inspiration that has no price and no cost. Nature offers itself to us and allows us to thrive both in our industry and in our hearts.
But the oceans are dying. From pollution, from overfishing, from climate change, from tourism activity. It is not a fatality. There is an immense awakening around the world, and here in Thailand, aspiring to reverse the damage done, and thoroughly review and reform our relation to Nature. The tourism industry, such an important asset to our region’s development, can lead this transformation. Not only by implementing new habits and behaviours, by participating to their environment’s restoration and preservation but also by setting examples and inspire their guests.
Through a number of projects and initiatives including education, durable management of marine pollution, restoration and engineering of underwater ecosystems, regrowth and protection of coral reefs, restoring the diversity of life forms (sharks, dugongs, sea urchins, turtles and marine plants…), Oceans For All Foundation wishes to help develop an international reputation for Phuket as an Earth-friendly destination that will appeal to a new style of travelers, ecologically conscious and concerned with Nature, Beauty and Sustainability.
Organize Cooperate Educate Acknowledge Nurture Save
The Foundation‘s first projects:
. CORAL FARMING : BACK TO THE BEACH
The flagship project is the construction of a coral farm on land in Phuket thanks to the technology invented by Dr. Jaubert from the Foundation of Prince Albert II of Monaco.
This system enables corals to grow faster so that they can be later relocated to reefs around Phuket (in collaboration with local reef NGOs and government agencies) that have been damaged by tourism activities in places like Maya Bay in Phi-Phi island where 90% of the reef is now dead due to the daily 5000+ tourists in the last 18 years.
Growing Coral in captivity, an experience started 27 years ago by Dr Jaubert has proved to be effective because corals are not subject to the rough underwater conditions, ie the currents, the predators, the tourist activity and of course acidification of the water.
Dr Jaubert will be travelling to Thailand in december 2019 for a series of meetings and conferences,
. LICENCE TO CLEAN
Phang Nga bay is a major marine attraction in Phuket with its landmark renamed “The James Bond island” since it featured in one of the 007 movies.
Every visitor to Phuket goes at least once to Phang Nga Bay during their holiday. Every day, around 10 000 people are shipped and as many as 200 boats cruise across the bay creating various pollution amongst which plastic and other non-organic waste.
The project is to have the first catamarans, build in coherence with environmental protection techniques – which will cruise the bay collecting floating plastic. Everyday, volunteers, but also student from local schools, will learn and act at the same time, collecting all floating waste. With a sail wearing our ecological message, the catamaran will be the symbol of the local communities environmental concern.
. PURE SHORES
Equip all Phuket beaches with permanent trash cans and organize a full circle waste collection and recycling. The foundation has already started experimenting processes in collaboration with the Ao Bor Tor in certain areas, taking into consideration sorting, and redistributing waste to local recycling plants.
. CONSERVATION: SHARK BREEDING AND RELEASE
Release of juvenile marine life such as sharks and sea horses to help restore the balance of the marine food chain. These events will be sponsored by partner hotels wishing to involve their guests.
. GARDEN OF MERMAIDS
Planting of sea grass meadows in the Andaman sea to absorb excess CO2 and to regrow natural habitats for endangered species including seahorses and dugongs. Restoring surrounding ecosystem will have a major impact on all activities around the Island.
. EDUC’OCEAN: NEW GENERATIONS
Involving the rising generations and implement a series of workshops, conferences, actions and initiatives in and out of schools is key to the development of new habits and the rise of a durable awareness of environmental challenges.
As part of this project, the foundation co-founder will soon release a book about the underwater world of Thailand. World famous underwater photographers from BBC, Nat geo, etc.., are supporting this work by giving their photos. The book will be released in English and the students of Head Start International School in Phuket have translated it in different languages (Thai, Russian and Chinese) as a school project.
CARBON FOOTPRINT: THE BLUE PASS
Hotels, resorts, Yacht owners as well as individuals can compensate their carbon foot print by acquiring their BLUE PASS label, a donation corresponding to the amount of CO2 their activities generate. A small card for a great step, a label of commitment to create a bond and say we care, we participate, we are part of a collective effort to achieve sustainable development with the sea surrounding us.
Many more actions are being discussed, proposed and put into action, including educational activities, workshops, books and films, public events, conferences, and much more.
Oceans For All Foundation is pioneering a new and challenging way of involving everyone into the great environmental transition and already, a large crowd of followers have embraced its dream, but on the boat of the ecological revolution, there is room for everyone to get on!