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Ahoy, me hearties! Young buccaneers invited to learn about marine life

The Coast Patrol, a marine preservation organization run entirely by volunteers, completes maiden voyage for new program aimed at educating youngsters on protecting the sea

Sue Surkes is The Times of Israel's environment reporter.

Aspiring pirates learn about marine life aboard the Coast Patrol's boat, Apparat, on June 11, 2022. (Egor Iggy Petrenko/Coast Patrol).
Aspiring pirates learn about marine life aboard the Coast Patrol's boat, Apparat, on June 11, 2022. (Egor Iggy Petrenko/Coast Patrol).

Avast ye, all aspiring pirates and seafarers! Want to learn about ocean life? This could be for you!

The Coast Patrol, a marine conservation organization that runs entirely on volunteers, is launching a weekly program to take children and teens out to sea to learn about Israel’s marine environment and the threats against it.

Sunday saw the program’s maiden voyage aboard Apparat, the organization’s patrol boat.

The voyage marked the annual United Nations World Oceans Day, which took place on Thursday.

The young swashbucklers wore pirate gear and even met a mermaid, who told them about her marine friends.

Weaving learning into an adventure, each 90-minute voyage will focus on the sea’s biodiversity and the many threats against it, from pollution and plastic to abandoned fishing gear.

The volunteer-based Coast Patrol takes young pirates out to learn about the sea and mark World Oceans Day, January 11, 2022. (Egor Iggy Petrenko/Coast Patrol).

Several dozen kids have already signed up in the Ashkelon area and a high school has expressed interest, although that will require a different educational approach, according to Joseph Segal, co-founder and director of the Coast Patrol.

Segal said that the organization, which hopes to pick children up from additional locations, is approaching schools and other frameworks and would welcome all youngsters, including those with special needs.

As the Apparat can only take seven youngsters at a time, the patrol is looking for an additional boat to increase this number.

Outings will take place at no cost, after school hours.

Further details can be obtained from the Coast Patrol website.

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