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Action for the Conservation of the Aegean Sea
Start date: Sep 1, 2016, End date: Jun 30, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

In the proposed project, the participants will be involved in research and conservation projects, in addition to campaigns for raising environmental awareness. The project will be based on the Aegean Island of Samos, but will also extend to other islands in the eastern Aegean. During the project the volunteers will acquire experience in actions related to applied research and environmental protection fields, such as:- Marine research and conservation: data collection (marine mammals, fisheries, coastal ecosystems and marine pollution).- Terrestrial research and conservation: data collection (rare fauna and flora, actions for reversing anthropogenic impacts on ecosystems).- Close cooperation with local communities and school students: promoting their participation in conservation actions. In order to carry out the above work, the volunteers will work closely with researchers and Archipelagos staff who have expertise in these specific fields. The volunteers work comprises of a combination of office work (e.g. preparation of awareness raising campaigns) and more speciality work (assistants in the collection of scientific data), or manual work supporting conservation actions. In the proposed project, 6 volunteers will participate in voluntary projects for the duration of 6 months. The volunteers' interests cover a wide range of fields related to environmental conservation, data collection, design of material for environmental awareness etc. Prerequisite for their selection was their real interest in environmental issues.Benefits of the programme in addition to its results, include the implementation of conservation actions, the protection and monitoring of rare species and habitats, as well as the awareness raising in local communities on environmental issues. Apart from their participation in applied research and conservation actions, with the completion of their projects, the volunteers will have acquired valuable experience and understanding of the local culture of the Aegean islands, the local condition of life and of how these affect environmental protection. The programme also provides the participants with the opportunity to take part in processes of exchange of ideas, evaluation of their learning experience through: - Working as part of an international group, within which it is necessary to exchange ideas, and have productive dialogue, in order to carry out the various volunteer projects.- Participation in regular meetings with the staff of the host organization, with other volunteers, discussing projects’ progress, and evaluating the learning experience. During the meetings volunteers have the ability to discuss their experience, and suggest ways of improving them, with the aim to tailor the activities to their personal interests.
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