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Dyer Island Conservation Trust
Introduction to the Overstrand Conservation Foundation
 

                       Press Release:  Earth Day “Drum it up” Project

 Dyer Island Conservation Trust  (DICT) would like to remind everyone that Tuesday, April 22nd was Earth Day.  Earth day is meant to celebrate, but most importantly practice, eco-friendly habits and lifestyles, promoting a “green” way of life.  There are many simple changes that everyone can make in order to be more environmentally friendly such as walking to work instead of driving (or car pooling), being sure to switch off unnecessary lights or electric appliances when not in use, conserving water usage, using reusable containers for your lunches instead of plastic wrap and/or foil and even bringing reusable bags, instead of buying plastic sacks, when shopping.  

DICT wants to encourage everyone to use effective waste management strategies, and in honour of Earth Day we implemented our “Drum it up” recycling stations.  A complete station consists of 5 recycled metal oil drums.  Each of the 5 drums are colour coded for a specific type of waste:
GREEN= Organic, YELLOW= Glass, BLUE= Plastics, GREY= Metal, WHITE= Paper

 The first of these (partial) stations was revealed at Kleinbaai harbour on Tuesday for Earth Day.  In the harbour we initially placed only one GREY (metal) and one Yellow (glass) drum, in order to clean up the drink containers which are highly popular with tourists on the boats. 

In honour of our “Marine Big 5” (whales, sharks, penguins, seals and dolphins) we will also have one animal portrayed on each drum.  We encourage everyone to use these bins and practice these simple sorting strategies in your own homes! These clearly marked drums are easy to understand and something as simple as sorting garbage can really cut back on waste.  We will expand this project to include additional “Drum it up” stations at The Great White House in Kleinbaai, and if successful, other stations around town as well. 

Our interest in being environmentally friendly can have a huge impact on our marine wildlife.  Global warming is of increasing concern, with variable air and sea temperatures affecting and changing the dynamics of many animal species, causing a chain reaction in food webs.  Garbage and foreign objects that make their way into the sea can get entangled around the bodies or insides (if eaten) of animals, potentially leading to death.

We hope everyone took the time on Tuesday to make Earth Day “resolutions” and find ways to reduce our “ecological footprint”.  Remember that we should always treat everyday as Earth Day!!

DICT also has other ongoing exciting environmental projects including our very successful housing project for the African Penguins on Dyer Island.  The houses are fibreglass shelters that offer them protection for their chicks and eggs.  To purchase a penguin house, or to find out more about DICT initiative and projects, please visit our website: www.dict.org.za or contact Kari (082 530 9133 or kari@dict.org.za)

OVERSTRAND CONSERVATION FOUNDATION

The OCF is an independent NGO registered as a Non-profit Organisation (NPO) and a Public Benefit Organisation (PBO). It was founded in 2002 by Overstrand conservation organisations to unify, coordinate and promote environmental conservation. This purpose for founding the organisation is now the OCF’s mission.

The OCF believes that the wellbeing of mankind is dependent upon and inseparable from the wellbeing of the natural environment. We have adopted the UNESCO Man and Biosphere (MaB) guidelines to sustainability as the basis for discerning how to reconcile the competing needs of people and our natural environment. The OCF works strictly according to a set of guiding principles that has been developed to ensure that we remain consistent with MaB and with our mission.

OCF & Landcare partnership receiving a 2007 national award for the OCF alien vegetation clearing and employment programme in the Klienrivier water catchment area.

To achieve its mission, the OCF divides its work into four focus areas; namely Eco-information, Eco-learning, Eco-management and Eco-employment. Work programmes are undertaken within each of these focus areas. Notable current programmes include the
• Design for Sustainable Living Expo, staged for the first time during the 2007 Whale Festival;
• Eco-Schools programme, commenced in 2007 with 6 schools receiving internationally recognised awards in the first year;
• Eco-watch programme, which is exerting increasing influence on the nature of development in the Overstrand;
• Alien vegetation and employment programme, which has resulted in significant areas of alien infested land being restored and provided many rural unemployed people with work. This programme also received an award from the Impumelelo Innovations Award Trust in 2007.

The OCF is proud of its achievements in each of these areas, and has plans to expand its activities in 2008.

Several membership options are available, starting with becoming a subscriber or ordinary member (R200 p.a.) and we will welcome volunteers to participate in our work programmes.

The OCF’s programmes all require funding. Our funding is derived from membership subscriptions and donations. As a PBO we are authorised to issue S18A tax deduction certificates to anyone making a donation or bequest.

You are invited to find out more about the OCF and our work by visiting our office at 23 Molteno St, Onrus (028 316 2181) and our website, www.ocf.co.za.

Rob Fryer
Manager


Dyer Island Teamsters


If any of you ever hesitated and wondered which shark and whale operator is the responsible and sustainable one and the right one to go with, then we have the answer for you. Wilfred Chivell from Dyer Island Cruises and Marine Dynamics won the Highly Commended price in the category "Best in a Marine Environment" as part of the Responsible Tourism Awards 2006 at the World Travel Market in London. Please see the list below of what they are actually doing for conservation and education:

Skills Development and Local Craft Training: Nolwandle Crafts. At the moment we are busy training 23 ladies from the local community.
Training of local guides. BEE Compliant
Saving oiled penguins and conservation of all sick sea birds and marine life
Clean Marine Project: Awareness for the Local Community
Penguin Nesting Project: Faces of Need
PHD study on Humpback Dolphins
PHD study on the predations of seals and sea birds
Student Educational programme
Supporting shark research
The Penguin Nesting Project on Dyer Island.

Not only did Wilfred initiate all the above, but he is living for animals and the conservation and protection of the coast.

Please do not forget to refer your clients to this 5 star boat based whale watching & shark cage diving operator.

The team who takes care of all their projects consists of Michelle du Toit, Isabelle Dupre and Sarah Barry,  qualified biologists with master degrees in certain aspects of marine studies. They are both spending their second whale season with the company.  Michelle (a South African) is a Marine Ornithologist with extensive experience in working with seabirds on various islands around the world.  Isabelle,  (French) is currently conducting her PhD on the Humpback Dolphins.  Sarah (UK) has done extensive marine guiding on the west coast of Scotland and the Isle of Mull.  From the local community, they brag with Mfomani and Kwezi , who are both currently training as marine guides. Mfomani is their whale whistler and has eyes like a hawk to spot whales in the far distance.  The rest of the team comprises of  Wilfred Chivell (director, conservationist, skipper & marine guide), Chantal Ives (reservations), Pumeza Hokolo (Marine Dynamics reservations), Thando Mhlalasa (client logistics),  Claudine O’Connor (client reception and Faces of Need representative), Natalie Martinus (reservations assistant), Sumare Otto (accountant), Sone Boshoff (marketing), Zile de Kock (marketing), Warren Hardenberg (skipper & guide), Lucas Mopaki (operational supervisor) and Albert Scholtz (logistics supervisor).  Not only do not they provide jobs, but operate from the Great White House that has a complement of 9 staff members from the local community.  Should you be interested to meet this crew and join them for an unforgettable whale watching trip, you can contact them on 028-384 0406 or www.whalewatchsa.co


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