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Futurismo Azores Adventures Launches “Guardians of the Azores” Project

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Futurismo Azores Adventures has pledged 78 390,00€ in experiences to the community families with children that enter the “Guardians of the Azores” Project, a unique citizen science project aiming to collect more than 21.000 kg of garbage, in a year, from natural areas of the islands.

Throughout the year, daily, Futurismo staff removes garbage from natural areas as we run our activities. In some cases, this kind of activity is even a part of our itineraries with some partners. And, regularly, we do cleaning actions with our staff, families and community members. And this last one is done following scientific protocols to share the data with governmental projects.

We are now going even further. We are challenging families with young children to become a guardian of the Azores. The project aims to take families with children to take part in the creation of scientific knowledge, while being outdoors and in contact with nature, to know and learn to preserve our islands.

We expect to collect 21.800 kg of garbage while having 2.850 participants. In exchange, just on Futurismo´ experiences, we are offering 78 390,00€ (32 850,00 € in 183, 100% discount, family vouchers and 45 540,00 € in 530, up to 90%, family vouchers).

The final prize, for the four families with the most collected trash, will be a weekend in some of the best hotels in the area.

Participation is entirely free but families, to be eligible, have to follow a strict protocol with the characterization of participants, geographical identification and characterization of the area, garbage characterization and photo report.

Eligible for cleaning will be areas such as the sea, coastal areas, lagoons and other watercourses, natural parks and other protected zones, hiking trails and surroundings as well as playgrounds and forest leisure areas.

At the end of the year, we hope that the outputs will be enough for a scientific report with treatment and publication of all information collected, with identification and photos of those who contributed. At the same time, the data will also be shared with Government projects and with master and PhD students.

Guardians of the Azores – A Family Driven Citizen Science Project

It’s a daily habit that we have, collecting debris. Being on one of our Whale Watching tours, on a hike around one of our lagoons or on a coastal cleaning campaign, Futurismo staff gives their best to clean every place they pass through. But it is not just about cleaning. It’s about raising awareness amongst the local and international community about debris, its impact in the environment and promoting pro-environmental practices and habits. It’s about helping monitor the coastal debris along the Azorean coast to support decision makers in the development of new policies and governance. This year alone, Futurismo has collected over 500 kg of debris on land and at sea.

Now, we decided to go even further! We are challenging families with young children to become Guardians of the Azores. A project that aims to inspire families to take part in the creation of scientific knowledge, while being outdoors and in contact with nature, to know and learn how to preserve our islands.

Families are encouraged to join hands and clean natural areas such as beaches, natural parks and hiking trails. They must follow a simple but strict protocol to characterize participants, the geographical area and type of garbage collected, in order to achieve the standards required as a useful citizen-science project. All the information collected will be shared with the Life IP Azores Natura project to contribute to monitor the debris found around São Miguel island.

We expect to collect 21.800 kg of garbage while having 2.850 participants. In exchange, just on Futurismo’ experiences, we are pledging 78 390,00€ in family vouchers, of which a weekend in some of the best hotels in the area for the four families with the most collected trash.

With this project, funded exclusively by the company, we are hoping to show that tourism can be a force for good in communities and that even in difficult times we can´t forget our connection with our community and our land.

As Margaret Mead once said: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, is the only thing that ever has”.

Voices From The Field – ATTA is providing this space for the benefit of our members for building awareness within our community. The views and opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily ATTA’s, nor do we endorse them by their publication.

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