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Debbie planned to visit Pulau Hantu's intertidal area at low tide this morning so drop by her blog to see what she has discovered, yah?
Apparently our paths have crossed before without me even knowing it. Debby was among one of those who joined my guided walks at Chek Jawa. She was also one of the amazing volunteers who helped out at the CJ transect 2004. Debby and I have communicated only by email so far. I hope to meet her personally soon.
Having read more about her in her own words, I am truly impressed by her dedication and efforts to raise awareness about Hantu, one of our most beautiful Southern islands.
Here is more about Debby in her own words ...
How did you first get involved in working for nature in Singapore?
Animals were what got me started working with the environment in Singapore. Since I've identified with them and their place in our social, cultural, emotional and physical existance, animals and the environment have been the centre and focus of all my work.
I've been a volunteer for 13 years working with various local and international NGOs doing animal welfare and conservation work. But Singapore's wild places have always been a focus for concern because it is home and if protection should begin somewhere, this would have to be the place.
What do you get out of working for nature?
People love nature and they want to connect with it. When you realise you can help people achieve that, it becomes the most rewarding experience ever. Through connecting with nature, they connect with everything else - we truly become one.
What are some of your current projects?
I began diving just a year ago, and was thrilled at Singapore's diverse and resilient marine life, and believed it deserved a little more recognition and certainly a lot more buzz.
So I started a thread on an online forum to gather if people were interested Pulau Hantu, and some positive response and undoubtedly, mentorship and encouragement from Siva of the Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research, was all I needed to get a Blog started. It's now 5 mths old and we've been taking people out to sea to introduce them to the experience of our southern islands and the wonderful wildlife that's there.
Kelvin Lim, the Raffles Museum's Curator of Fishes has been assisting the Hantu Blog in fish identification and has encouraged us to submit lists of animals spotted during Hantu Blog dives. This activity allows the museam to observe Singapore's marine life, through the eyes of ordinary people. This is especially useful information considering the frequency with which the Blog visits our local waters.
With the support and encouragement of individuals and corporates like SeaHounds Scuba - who shares our environmental interests, the Hantu Blog has moved from being a place of discussion to a place of activity. Now divers don't want to shun Hantu, they want to discover it. With this continued support we hope to train more Dive Masters to lead similar tours. We're also looking into developing educational material and presentations for school talks.
To learn about our work visit the Hantu Blog
And if you're keen for a trip, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Debby's daytime job is as an environmental journalist. She currently volunteers as a wildlife trade researcher, volunteer leader, guide and nature educator.
More on how YOU can make a difference too...
these blog entries were first uploaded on MoBlog Singapore! Celebrate Singapore NDP 04
website©ria tan 2004