As expected, due to the current travel restrictions in place worldwide, Indonesia Immigration have officially redacted their September 11th 2020 reopening plan and have announced that there will be no tourists VISA’s issued until 2021. This means with great regret we are forced to reschedule the relaunch plan for our internship program. It is confirmed that the department is working on a new reopening schedule which includes a gradual step by step process set to be announced in the coming months. Social VISA’s should be made available before the end of the year but dates are not yet confirmed.
Until new Social VISA’s are being processed again there is no way for any of our interns to enter the country. We will continue to monitor the progress here in Indonesia and as soon as Social VISA’s are available, we will be contacting you and reopening immediately. Unfortunately, we do not know when that date will be at this time.
As always, we will continue to be flexible to all start dates. Now there is nothing for us to do but continue working on our conservation and research efforts here in Indonesia and wait for the reopening to welcome back our intern program.
We have received enough donations to run a 6-month coral propagation program on the northern coast of Nusa Penida and have employed 7 local tourism industry workers until December 2020. We are continuing our hunt for grants and donations to extend this program for an additional 6 months both for our coral nurseries and our local workers.
The coral team heads out every week to grow the coral nursery sites and conduct regular monitoring. Community events have been held to help educate the local community on Nusa Penida about coral conservation. A recent group of children attended a full day coral experience where they learned about the importance of corals and practicing the OceanQuest Global propagation method with a hands, interactive seminar designed to inspire the next generation.
Bira Coral Project
A new program is launching in Bira with project manager Marco volunteering his time to work closely with local groups in Bulukumba. Several meetings have been conducted with the Bulukumba tourism department and a new coral workshop and propagation project is in the works. With funding already secured, our lead marine biologist, Pascal Sebastian, is putting together a long-distance coral workshop in Bahasa Indonesia to educate the community in Bira on coral ecology and propagation methods. Adopting a modified coral propagation technique from Nusa Penida the Bira team is getting back to work!
A new partnership with Ocean Garden had our staff taking part in a coral propagation instructor training program. Ocean Gardener is an NGO founded in 2016 dedicated to coral reef education. After 20 years’ experience in coral farming in Indonesia, this team of marine biologists, divers, and coral farmers has created an advanced training program that we are integrating into our dive master internship program in 2021. After a 3 days intensive training workshop the Indo Ocean Project and Reeflex team installed the first nursery at the iconic Crystal Bay. This ongoing program will have our interns taking part in regular underwater propagation and coral planting techniques.
August Webinar Series
In the month of August, we are hosting multiple online workshops!
- Equipment Master Class with Marco Bastaroli (Bira Project Manager)
- CorAlliance Update (English & Bahasa) with Pascal Sebastian (Lead Marine Biologist) and the Coral Boys
- My Conservation Career with special guest Gauthier Mescam (shark biologist)
- SSI Science of Diving Q&A with Marco Bastaroli (Bira Project Manager)
All webinars have been uploaded and made available to all incoming interns. If you want access to any of these webinars please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Continue to track our work here in Indonesia through Facebook and Instagram. Make sure you are part of our Indo Ocean Warriors private Facebook group to catch up to date info and take part in discussions.
On behalf of the entire Indo Ocean team, I want to thank all of you for your patience, understanding, and dedication. It is important for us to open as soon as possible so we can continue our work, but it is more important that we all stay safe and healthy in these difficult and uncertain times. Rest assured that we will keep you informed as soon as there is any news on boarders reopening.