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PAREO: Students From Seychelles Exchange Experiences In Mauritius About Coral Reef Protection

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A group of children in the PAREO Programme in Seychelles had the opportunity to learn from countries involved in the project and also showcased the activities they have been doing in a presentation event in Mauritius.

The ceremony, which took place on Tuesday, included performances, games and an exhibition that showcased the talents of the children involved in the programme.

The PAREO’s mission, which includes Seychelles, Mauritius, Reunion, and  Comoros, is to raise awareness among children and local communities about the protection of coral reefs and move from knowledge to action.

PAREO (le Patrimoine récifal de l’océan Indien entre nos mains – the reef heritage of the Indian Ocean in our hands) is a programme of IRD – the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development. It is sponsored by Interreg V, the European Union and IRD, also the developer of PAREO.

Students From Seychelles Exchange Experiences In Mauritius About Coral Reef Protection

According to Maria Brioche, the outreach and education officer, “This event is important as it brings all the four countries of PAREO together to showcase the activities that the children have done for the project. This is important for us as we are learning from each other.”

Brioche told SNA that Seychelles has a lot to learn from Mauritius.

“In Mauritius, PAREO is integrated into the primary curriculum, this way children do not have the option to participate or not participate, so teachers take an hour and a half per week to work with them. This is what we aim to do in Seychelles to multiply the number of children participating in PAREO with the approval of the Ministry of Education, if agreed,” she said.

She said they were able to experience the Mauritian “Bis lamer” (Sea Bus) which travels the country, not only to educate children but also adults.

“These people can schedule the bus to come to their school or business, or the bus offers them free time slots that they have in their calendar. They have a microscope and living examples to show the complexity of ocean life and material explaining the challenges of keeping it healthy, as well as educators interacting with the public,” Brioche explained.

She added that even though the turnout was not to their expectations because of bad weather, those who came were very pleased with the exhibits.

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