Meeting the users of the sea
In addition to commercial whale-watching operators, marine mammals are also approached by leisure boaters, who often underestimate the impact they can have on the animals. In order to raise awareness and explain the regulations and approach instructions, Sanctuary agents have been present in 2021 at certain key sites, initially in Martinique. This operation will be renewed and then extended to the rest of the French West Indies.
Every year, the Agoa Sanctuary provides financial support for educational projects.
In 2020, the association Mon école Ma Baleine benefited from this support to create educational tools for schools and the general public. This included creating games and reprinting of activity books. The project also included interventions with schools, the establishment of a network of teachers and facilitators and their training.
In 2019, a grant was awarded to the association for the organisation of an event day on the theme of knowledge and protection of cetaceans in the leeward coast of Guadeloupe.
In 2018, the Sanctuary supported the creation of an illustrated book on cetaceans.
In 2019, the Territorial Agency for the Environment of Saint Barthélemy was supported for its project to raise awareness in schools and the establishment of a land-based whale-watching point. A panoramic telescope was installed on site as well as an awareness-raising panel. The financial aid provided by the Agoa Sanctuary also concerned raising the awareness of schoolchildren during sea trips.
The Megaptera association also received a grant for the organisation of the first Whale Day in Saint Barthélémy, which took place on March 8, 2020. The day was punctuated by presentations, conferences and debates.
The nature reserve of Saint-Martin was also supported by the Agoa Sanctuary in the purchase of scientific and educational materials in 2019, including anatomical sculptures of emblematic species of the Sanctuary to raise awareness of the physiological and biological characteristics of these animals.