“In the end, we will conserve only what we love, we will love only what we understand, and we will understand only what we are taught.” (Baba Dioum, Founding Member of the Executive Committee International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), ).
ECOCEAN carries out various educational outreach activities in Australia and overseas to ensure our core objective of increasing community awareness of the conservation status of the whale shark and its surrounding marine environment is achieved.
Even though our target audience is very broad, ECOCEAN does have a focus on youth and believe that the conservation of species such as the whale shark begins with their education. ECOCEAN has been involved in numerous youth education programs since 1995. Our work with community education was recognised in 2009 when awarded the Premier’s Science Award (Outreach Program of the Year).
What ECOCEAN has been involved with:
- Numerous presentations at Perth and Regional schools
- Stall at the annual Whale Shark Festival in Exmouth
- Annual training for the Department of Environment and Conservation staff and whale shark industry members on whale shark photo-identification
- Citizen Science project (Biodiversity Volunteer Project, Atlas of Living Australia) in collaboration with the Australian Museum http://volunteer.ala.org.au 2012
- Keynote speaker for Science Teacher Association of WA in 2010 and 2012
- Presentation for Society for Experimental Biology (Prague, Czech Republic)
- Keynote speaker for Stars, Space and Sharks- Science for families in collaboration with Curtin University http://www.asc.asn.au/blog/2010/09/21/wa-stars-space-and-sharks-science-for-families/
- Keynote speaker for the Council for Australian University Tourism and Hospitality Education Inc. (CAUTHE) conference in collaboration with Curtin University
- Keynote speaker for Arabian Seas Whale Shark Research Conference (Fujairah, UAE)
- Presentation for the Society for Conservation Biology (Beijing, China)
- Earthwatch volunteer program 2006-2009
- Earth Day Lecture, University of Madrid (Madrid, Spain)