OceansWatch wants to make a positive difference to the life of the people in Island communities. Aid projects can be a double-edged sword so our aim is to work for the people only at their request. We intend to build relationships with the locals and see where they feel their needs lie. We will also look at the overall consequences of any assistance or projects we are involved in.
Our Sustainable livelihood Vision
Our vision is for Island communities to be sustainable.
Our Sustainable livelihood Mission
Our mission is to work with Island communities that request our assistance to develop sustainable livelihood projects.
Our current projects
As soon as OceansWatch started looking at marine conservation issues in developing countries, we realised that they were inexorably linked with humanitarian issues. As the marine environment is their main source of protein, everyone who lives by the coast in a developing country relies to some extent on having a productive reef ecosystem.
Moana Arts is a new initiative by OceansWatch where the artisans of developing countries can achieve a fairer price for their crafts. Presently the artisans sell their work locally, often to companies that haggle them down to the lowest possible figure who then sell on to the general public at many times the price. The idea for Moana Arts came about after searching for opportunities for the artisans to maximise the return for their work.
OceansWatch buys the handicraft from the artisans at a fair local selling price.
We then sell them at a market and online in New Zealand. All the bags and carvings have the name of the artist and we have information about them so people can know where there money is going. All the profits are returned to the artisans.
OceansWatch’s fresh water project in the Reef Islands
Thanks to a new technology that will detect and map underground water, people living on coral atolls will be able to identify fresh water sources more accurately. Rising sea levels are causing increased salination of atoll fresh water lenses.
This technology, along with other sustainable strategies will greatly extend the time humans can live on atolls effected by climate change.
On Fenualoa Island in the Reef Islands, the community have 1 water tank per 5 households provided by an NGO for drinking water but still rely on wells for all other water especially during the dry season. The existing wells are increasing in salinity and some are already over WHO recommendations for safe drinking water.
The technology OceansWatch will use (new electro Seismic Technology) has been shown to work very effectively in test situations in other parts of the world but has not been trialled on a coral atoll yet. So, we will be testing it on this atoll in the isolated Reef Islands, which is a group of fifteen islands in the Temotu Province, Solomon Islands.
The island will be surveyed and existing wells located and tested for salinity, solids and depth measurements taken. This grid like Electro-Seismic survey will map the aquifers under the atoll. The survey report provided will indicate the best locations for new wells with the least salt water intrusion and will ensure that the best possible long term fresh water resource is available.