One of Save the Palawan Seas Foundation’s newest schemes is the Conservation Through Education: Seminar Series. Also known as the marine and fisheries education, this initiative was introduced with the goal of teaching and inspiring participants on good fishing practices, environmental protection, and marine conservation. In turn, this initiative also enables them to explore alternative means of fishing livelihood.
Officially launched on June 23, 2022, the first participants of this educational initiative were fisherfolk members from Sitio Dinet, Sitio Calampisao and Sitio Calabugtong.
A culmination of six sessions, the successful completion by the first batch of participants was marked by a graduation ceremony, held on September 16, 2022 at BMARC-SPSF, Casian, Taytay, Palawan.
On the morning of the ceremony, some participants arrived late due to bad weather during their boat crossings, they greeted everyone with big smiles. Composed of graduates from three communities, they wore the colored shirts assigned to them: students from Sitio Denet wore white, students from Sitio Calampisao wore green, and those from Sitio Calbugtong wore red.
Around 9:30am, the morning began through an opening prayer, then through an introduction message by the project coordinator, who thanked each Sitio for their dedication and participation. One by one, each Sitio Leader made their speech, with the first one delivered by Carlito Sulad of Sitio Dinet. He thanked the SPSF team for choosing his community for the project and for the participants to always remember the lessons they learned during the sessions whenever they go fishing.
Ranulfo Lingcopines, the Sitio Leader of Calampisao, was up next and thanked the foundation for giving his community the opportunity to attend seminars that would be of benefit to them. Sidnie Tojeno, the Sitio Leader of Calabugtong, also made a speech, thanking SPSF for all their efforts to conduct the seminars.
Stephanie Margaux Inocando, the manager of SPSF, proceeded to say her sentiments then asked the participants to share what they learned and which lessons made an impact the most to them during the seminars. Individuals from various communities were quick to give their answers, which included how to properly use fishing gear especially in municipal waters and important fishery laws.
After lunch, the graduation ceremony officially commenced. Participants from Sitio Dinet were the first ones to be called for awarding, and were given certificates and caps, which were personalized giveaways. Graduates from Sitio Dinet and Sitio Calampisao followed, posing for the camera with big smiles and laughter as they received their completion certificates.
After the appreciation ceremony, special awards were given to the graduates who excelled in the quizzes, while actively participating in the sessions. A congratulatory message was then given by the Project Coordinator, followed by a closing message. To conclude the program, a group photo was taken after together with the team and the participants to conclude the program. A total of 131 beneficiaries from 3 communities graduated from the first batch of the MFE Seminar Series.