'Sea Turtle Rescue Nicaragua

Project Description
The Sea Turtle Rescue Project (STR) is a not for profit species conservation program dedicated to the preservation of endangered Sea Turtle breeding and nesting habitat. Our activities include but are not limited to the reduction of species extinction rates by habitat protection, education, nest relocation, legislative lobbying, research, raising cultural awareness, and assisting in the development of sustainable economic alternatives to the unlawful harvesting of Sea Turtles and Sea Turtle eggs. To achieve these ends we have established the following: 

Goals and Objectives  
  • To locate, incubate, and release ten thousand Sea Turtle hatchlings per year.
  • To increase the area of protected beach by two hundred meters per year.
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  • To decrease the poaching of Sea Turtle nests by a minimum of fifty percent within five years.
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  • To establish an ongoing research program to monitor the health of the Sea Turtle populations served by STR and conduct research education for the advancement of Sea Turtle conservation.
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  • To facilitate local economic alternatives and sustainable eco industry to ease the demand on environmental resources.
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  • Actively search for local and international support, volunteers, and funding sources.
The direct intervention required by the project
to achieve these goals is:
     
  • Secure and preserve the legal rights to vital habitat. 
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  • Construct and maintain viveros (hatcheries). 
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  • Secure appropriate governmental permission to collect eggs and populate viveros.
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  • Initiate an intensive and comprehensive conservation education program in local schools.
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  • Develop and facilitate sustainable alternative community based economic ecological industries and skills to introduce and teach to local residents.
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  • Construct workshop/classroom to facilitate instruction.
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  • Acquire and/or create relevant instructional materials.
 
An important feature of the project’s plan is to enlist the support and involvement of the local community thereby creating a condition of sustainability that will ensure the survival of the Sea Turtle for generations. We believe that this is the only long term solution. Communities and individuals, not projects and governments, will ultimately make the difference. The action plan to achieve sustainability is as follows:

Economic Sustainability: 
  • Charging tourists to visit the vivero and receive a guided tour; 
      
  • To continually contact funding providers and maintain a continuous funding stream (where possible); 
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  • To plan a sponsor a turtle program, where members of the public donate to the project and receive updates, photos and news about their turtle(s).

Environmental Sustainability: 
  • Reduce litter/trash on beach and river areas through community involvement (a local plan has already begun to be implemented, with support of local communities for a plastic bottle recycling program);
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  • To form partnerships with other NGOs and local projects to initiate a waste management program.
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  • Educate local communities / residents on turtle egg handling, vivero building, and turtle tours (English and Spanish).

Human Resources Sustainability: 
  • Develop the turtle network of local community activists, youth groups, and tourist helpers. 
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  • Advertise / publicize volunteer vacancies in Nicaragua and abroad through environmental volunteering networks. 
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  • Incorporate (through training and employment) community members and landowners for responsibility of beach protection similar to Neighborhood Watch. 
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  • Initiate placements for interns and volunteers from local universities (Chinandega, Leon, Managua). 
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  • Use volunteers for funding searches, publicity, and sea turtle eggs hatchery management.
© 2013 Sea Turtle Rescue Nicaragua
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