Justin Beswick felt a call to do more for the Turtles of the world so he ventured to Kenya to help the Local Ocean organisation.


Watamu, Kenya – Justin Beswick a South African driven by a purpose, left home to go work with the turtles. He joined the Local Ocean organisation. Local Ocean Conservation works to rescue, rehabilitate and release turtles found along the Kenyan coastline.

Juston shared their story with us in the hopes to grow awareness and support for the organisation.

The Swahili coast of East Africa is famous for its pristine beaches, warm turquoise waters and extraordinary marine life. This idyllic holiday destination is also home to many lucky people as well as iconic sea species, including various endangered turtles. Maybe you’ve been lucky enough to visit, or perhaps it’s on your bucket list!

It sounds like a coastal paradise, right!?

Unfortunately, this tropical coast is rapidly changing as a result of climate change and its unpredictable impacts, as well as unsustainable practices and ever-growing plastic pollution. These challenges are significant and complex. But Now You Sea hope.

For over two decades, Local Ocean Conservation (LOC) has been meeting these challenges head-on to help save the endangered sea turtles and other marine species. With a fellow South African, Justin Beswick, now leading the team through a critical phase of scaling-up their impact and releasing their invaluable turtle data Open Source.

“Not many know, but Sea Turtles are an amazing indicator species for ocean health. This means their health, presence, absence or abundance reflects the environmental conditions of the ecosystem they inhabit. So, if we protect and enhance the environmental elements that sea turtles need to thrive, humanity and other species also benefit!

Here at LOC, we have one of the best turtle conservation datasets around – two decades worth! With so much untapped potential for research and conservation lessons to be learnt. By releasing this data Open Source we break out of the constraints of our own organisation and enable all who want to help make a difference. That’s the power of Open Source, if you want to help, you can!” – Justin Beswick

To help you can support their Crowdfund, participate directly in their Turtle Conservation or just share the love #NowYouSea and help bring awareness to fantastic work being done right here on the continent!

Local Ocean Conservation’s 22-year track record:

  • > 18,000 turtle rescues and releases
  • 997 turtle nests protected
  • > 75,000 turtle hatchlings made it safely to the ocean

Facts are in the data, and they should be shared!

Through its turtle and marine conservation programmes, LOC has collected vast amounts of invaluable data on sea turtles and their habitats. LOC’s data though vast: is captured on paper and input manually into local databases, which increases the rate of errors and makes it vulnerable to loss has not been cleaned and transferred into an easy to use database, inhibiting the potential for analysis and generating insights

Beyond the data LOC plans to scale-up their programmes and build on skills and capabilities of the organisation, thus increasing their impact.

For LOC to realise these initiatives, they need to raise funds and to help with this, they have launched a crowdfunding campaign called Now You Sea Turtles. #NowYouSea

LOC’s crowdfunding campaign will run for 60 days, starting on 10 June 2019. The fundraising page is accessible here. LOC’s goal: To raise USD 250,000 through this campaign.

Local Ocean Conservation (LOC) is a non-profit organisation committed to the protection of Kenya’s marine environment. For over 20 years, LOC has been successfully engaging with local fishermen and communities to actively participate in the conservation of marine life and the ocean that they depend on.

KENYA, Watamu: In a photograph taken by Make It Kenya 11 Decmeber 2015, Fikiri Kiponda, a member of the Local Ocean Trust team, holds a Hawksbill turtle at the organisation’s rehabilitation centre in Watamu on Kenya’s Indian Ocean coast, ahead of it’s release back to the ocean. The Local Ocean Trust and Watamu Turtle Watch work to protect both the future of sea turtles and the wider fragile marine environment along Kenya’s Watamu stretch of coastline through nest-monitoring and protection of turtle nesting sites, practising a catch and release programme working closely with local fisherman who inadvertently catch sea turtles in the nets, and conservation education and awareness outreach with local communities. MAKE IT KENYA PHOTO / STUART PRICE.

Sources: Press Release
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About the Author

Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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