NMSAS to host programs geared towards promoting conservation

blue@samoanews.com

The National Marine Sanctuary of American Samoa (NMSAS) will be hosting the “Ta’iala ole Sami Youth Summit” tomorrow at the Tauese P.F. Sunia Ocean Center in Utulei from 9 a.m. to 12 noon.

The “Ta’iala o le Sami” is a program for local public schools that are located in close proximity to Sanctuary areas.

According to NMSAS Outreach, Communications Coordinator, and Community Liaison Mrs. Apulu Veronika Molio'o Mata'utia Mortenson, schools that are part of this piloted program are: Lupelele Elementary School, A.P. Lutali Elementary School (Aunu’u), Fagaitua High School, and Leone High School.

“These schools develop a class-based project that promotes conservation efforts through marine debris removal, water quality testing, and marine mammals/turtle tracking,” Apulu explained.

The participants collect data to validate their findings, which they will share tomorrow during the ‘Ta’iala o le Sami Youth Summit’.

“The students from the two high schools will share what they've learned over the past four months and incorporate it into the program to share with the other high schools,” Apulu continued.

To close out the program, participants will sing, share Public Service Announcements (PSAs), music videos (MTVs), display boards/models, and wear recycled outfits made out of trash that they've collected and transformed.

SANCTUARY SUMMER SCIENCE IN THE VILLAGE (SSSV)

The Sanctuary Summer Science in the Village (SSSV) is a program that enhances youth understanding and appreciation of their marine environment. “SSSV is focused on studying the importance of coral reefs, human impacts, and ways to protect and preserve our natural resources for future generations,” Apulu explained.

“This program can motivate, encourage, and challenge the youth to be great stewards of the ocean by taking care of their back yard: their sanctuary,” she continued.

Students engaged in the program will explore Sanctuary area(s) and the impact of environmental events on a local or global scale. The village is the classroom, and the natural environment is the laboratory. Students will learn through direct experience and observation within the natural environment surrounding their sanctuary area. There will be an array of guest speakers from various environmental agencies and marine science program from the American Samoa Community College (ASCC) who will be implementing lessons and activities pertaining to various environmental issues and topics.

The SSSV will take place June 5-9 in Ta’u, Manu’a; June 12-22 at Fagatele Bay; June 26-July 7 at Aunu’u; and July 10-20 at Fagalua/Fogama’a. The program will take place on the aforementioned dates (Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. – 12noon).

Students who reside in villages around Sanctuary areas, as well as parents and media representatives are welcomed to attend any or all of the planned sessions.

More information can be obtained by calling 633-6500.

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