OUR CHOSEN SEA BASED CHARITY
Here at Roe Cottage we wanted to give something back to the planet as a thank you for your wonderful orders from us. So we looked at lots of different options. Should we support something on land or at sea? Plant a tree or save an animal? Large long-standing charity or a smaller personal one? So many decisions. Then an idea came to me. Here's how we came to support our chosen charity.
Whilst visiting my family in Somerset, my sister got me to complete a "What's your Spirit Animal?" test.
I thought oh, why not. So we did the test and it seems that my Spirit Animal during this season is a Sea Turtle. I don't usual hold much weight to these things, but my sister said that if I thought about it, I'd probably been seeing lots of turtles recently. I dismissed it at first and then sure enough, I realised that for the last month or more I'd been seeing one turtle in particular, the logo for Plastic Free July is a TURTLE !!
Then I started seeing turtles everywhere. From the pattern on my son's shorts to a plant called String of Turtles that just popped up on my Instagram the very next day. Since then I've been seeing turtles regularly. So I figured if God was trying to send me a message he picked a beautiful animal to do it with. So every time I'd see a turtle I'd pray to God for guidance. So far things have been working out for us.
So I started researching charities that worked with Sea Turtles. There were quite a few. Some in the UK but that were linked to Aquariums which I have an issue with, some were based in America as many Sea Turtle nesting sites are along the their borders and the continent of South America. Whilst these larger charities were amazing in their work to save the turtles , their nesting sites and the waters they swim in, I wanted something closer to home. So I refined my research to the European Continent. That led me to Archelon and Medasset.
Medasset is an amazing international non-profit organisation working to protect Marine and Coastal Habitats in the Mediterranean, with Sea Turtles as their flagship species.
If you want to find out more about this charity you can click on the link to the left.
Archelon is a non-profit organisation protecting the sea turtles and their habitats in Greece through monitoring and research. If you want to find out more about this organisation you can click on the link to the left.
So we wanted to support one of these two charities. In the end, after reading through what both charities did and the struggles they are facing, we chose to support ARCHELON.
Archelon has to deal with the damage that tourists causes to the turtles throughout Greece. Mainly because there are not enough laws and enforcement of those laws stopping tourists boats from invading the loggerhead turtles nesting grounds. Every week they rescue turtles that have been hit by the tourists boats. Both Zakynthos National Marine Park and Laganos Bay have rules about how many boats can enter the area, how far away they should be from the turtles, and how long they can stay there but these rules are completely ignored by the tourist boats. Because we Brits love Greece as a holiday destination I can't help but feel that we may have some part in hurting these magnificent animals.
So for that reason I feel that I have to support this localised charity, to help them educate the locals and tourists alike. They need the support of funds and volunteers to heal the injured turtles, and support the tours around the rescue centre where you can see these hurt turtles without causing them even more harm.
Please check out their website for all the information on their work, and if you fancy volunteering I'm sure they'd love your help.
If you are planning on going on holiday to Greece, please remember that just because the tourist boats are going into the waters doesn't mean they are following the laws. Use your common sense. These turtles are wild animals, if it were a shark would you want to get that close? If you were trying to get to your home would you want boat propellers cutting up your back!?
Think twice, protect one of the oldest species we have on this planet.