What does it mean to you to be a Protector of Paradise? Maybe you conduct beach cleanups, or volunteer with a local environmental non-profit. Maybe you refuse single-use plastics. To me, being a protector of paradise, has a broader meaning. It means I must use my strengths towards the common goal of making our environment more sustainable. I feel I must go beyond my local community to do this. To visit others to see how they are coping with environmental issues.
The Protector of Paradise campaign was formed to increase awareness about coral reefs, plastic pollution, and global warming amongst others. All the while showcasing the beauty of the Fiji Islands and the people. We will explore the Fiji Islands, partake in environmental activities, visit local villages, and meet eco-conscious companies. Geared up with cameras the seven of us will create positive content which will be used for educational documentaries.
I feel one of my strengths is my deep knowledge of the ocean and my ability to share it with individuals of all ages. For the past four years I have lived in one of the most isolated island chains in the world, Hawaii. On Maui, I work as a Conservation and Education Director for Trilogy Excursions. Year around I get to interact with tourists and the local community. Sharing the knowledge I have gained through my experiences. While traveling around Fiji I hope to do the same while learning new things.
The Hawaiian word “kuleana,” roughly translates to mean responsibility. As an island resident and ocean lover it is my kuleana to protect what I love. We must all work together to find better solutions or the problem will continue to get worse. I am excited to explore Fiji and broaden my awareness by learning what eco-conscious initiatives the country, the villages, and individuals are doing.