Testimonial from

My first GVI project ever was the Marine Conservation Expedition in the Seychelles. I heard about GVI through Facebook advertising and followed a link (I’m a real sucker for marine conservation) and discovered this programme in Seychelles. A friend of mine who I met last year on a marine conservation project messaged me out of the blue and asked if I had heard of GVI and seen their programmes. Bippity boppity boop, all the stars aligned and we met up again on this awesome project! This expedition was very exciting, busy and fast-paced – especially in the first week. We had a schedule that ran from 6 in the morning to 6 at night most days, with a minimum of one dive a day, usually 2 dives, daily duties which would include filling dive tanks on the compressor, kitchen duties – cleaning and food prep etc., boat duty – getting all the gear from the kit room onto the Ute (“truck “to non-indopacifics) and onto the boat with the first dive, also moving the boat if the tide wasn’t favourable, grounds duty consisted of dorm maintenance and recycling/trash etc. We sure knew how to keep busy! In our leisure time there was a massive hammock between the dorm buildings, staff house and kitchen so was the primo spot to hang out if you didn’t mind the thrill of potential hairy caterpillar attacks. BBQ nights were also a great time. We received ample training on our coral reef species and also dive certifications. Before conducting surveys everyone was required to be Advanced Open Water certified (this was taught on base, Open water was a necessity before starting the expedition). Some people had 80+ dives under their belt before arriving; others had only just completed their Open Water. Regardless of experience we all were treated equally and the courses tailored to individuals as needed. I had so much fun on this project! I saw so many amazing things both above and below the water; big as fruit bats, dolphins, lemon sharks, white tip reef sharks, hawksbill turtles, bumphead parrotfish, octopus, HEAPS of beautiful coral reef fish, eagle rays and so much more. The staff and volunteers were amazing too. To be put in a place so far from your own home and to create a new family is truly special. Oh, and the stars at night are amazing! Next to no light pollution and coming from NZ but living in the UK meant I was looking at a sky I’d never seen before. The experience I had at Cap Ternay is the money-can’t-buy kind of confidence and happiness you forget that you’re capable of. My advice to anyone considering a GVI project is to visit the respective Facebook page and look at the recent updates, especially if you’re too shy to ask outright, but also to email through the website enquiry or a Facebook message, we’re not scary I promise! There’s an amazing wealth of knowledge in the GVI community, so ask away

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