We are very humble and proud to be accepted as the Scandinavian affiliate of Seacology, the sole non-profit organization working globally to protects nature and culture of islands all over the world. The work of Seacology is unique in many ways. With the climatic changes all over the world the islands are even more voulnerable to the changes occuring in nature. From beforehand we are aware of the hard pressure laid upon local people in these small communities, e.g. by selling out their land to shortsighted though hard needed income from industry projects instead of protcting the nature on longterm perspective. By supporting Seacology by fundraising also in Scandinavia we hope to contribute to stablilize the outstanding nature and culture on islands all over the world. In a month or two we are ready to start our contributions to projects run by Seacology, for detailed informations about projects, please visit the homepage of www.seacology.com.
I decided to get involved with Seacology because of it's conservation model. Seacology partners with indigenous islanders to protect endangered species, habitats and cultures. For example, Seacology will pay for a school in exchange for the village agreeing to protect some part of a marine reef or rain forest. I have visited villages in Indonesia, Maldives, Fiji etc. and it is wonderful how the people are proud of there new school as well as the area they are preserving. It's a win-win.
I discovered Seacology by attending a Goldman Environmental Prize ceremony a dozen years ago. When Seacology’s founder Paul Cox Ph.D. received one of these coveted awards, we took notice. Seven years ago I joined the board of directors, which boasts so many committed and generous supporters. The mission is compelling, the leadership is remarkable, and the efficacy is extremely high. From three projects a dozen years ago, we’ve now funded almost 200. Islands are where the abundance of biodiversity resides on this planet, and we fund projects by making deals with the islanders themselves, who almost never want to destroy their own forests and reefs for gain, but who need simple things like schoolrooms, community centers, micro-hydroelectricity, basic sanitation, etc. We get them those things, and in the process allow them to preserve the sanctity of their environments. The executive director, Duane Silverstein, is A++.
As an attorney I have the opportunity to learn about many nonprofit organizations. Seacology impressed me, to the point where I joined their board, with their unique "win-win" approach - an island village obtains something tangible the indigenous people requested such as a school building or fresh water delivery system, in exchange for establishing a marine or forest reserve. This is not “paper conservation.” Seacology helps the locals conserve their highly threatened island ecosystems while at the same time preserving their quality of life, which is culturally tied to their environment. In effect, Secology is their conservation partner, with a benefit for the whole world, as species extinctions are occurring faster on islands than anywhere else. Seacology does this in a cost effective way and is run rather “lean and mean.” The conservation results are immediate, tangible and concretely verifiable. When you want to help other people, this is how you want to do it.