Testimony of Jessica Julaia, researcher for Ocean Revolution in Mozambique
Jessica Julaia is a researcher for Ocean Revolution Mozambique (ORM). She was chosen as Mozambique’s Representative to the Our Ocean’s global conference in Washington D.C. (15 & 16 September 2016)
“Mozambique is a country that has a prime location, good weather all year, full of wildlife and coastal resources. Here, you find the main ecosystems of the world and nice people always willing to help. So, even though we hear a lot about rhino and elephant poaching, political unrest and corruption, for me, the good parts are much stronger. My country is a good place to live.
I took part in the Ocean Revolution project because, as an Ocean lover, ORM stands for everything I believe in. It gives young indigenous science students and the communities in general the opportunity to learn and care for their country and more specifically their coastal resources. I applied for an Ocean Revolution Scholarship in 2014 for my thesis research including a diving course to be able to apply my skills in what I believe in and by being part of this project. I can pass the knowledge I acquired to others.
I see a lot of positive impacts from ORM activity because now, for example, we have indigenous Mozambicans trained to the highest level in scuba diving industry so that they can be involved in every activity in the Mozambican coast and benefit from its resources. The scholarships for tuition and research that are awarded for Mozambican science students are essential for the future of the Mozambican coastline and waters because it gives them the chance to keep making science and believing. There is also the ocean literacy program that consists in speeches and interaction with the communities and specially children, to raise awareness, knowledge and advocate for the Ocean, which inspires them to be the wardens of their underwater world.
I see a future where people (especially coastal communities) know and comprehend their own problems and take the lead in solving them; where we can live well and sustainably within the planetary boundaries of biodiversity loss and climate change and where we are the ones ensuring that any use of natural resources is equitable and ecologically sustainable.
I also see a bigger ORM in the future, where the people attending the speeches and meetings will be the activists and ocean revolutionaries of tomorrow and we will community by community cover the entire country. And I believe that it is all possible through Ocean Revolution initiative and projects. “
To find out more on the Ocean Revolution project in Mozambique, click here.