Defending Cambodia's Ocean Since 2008
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"The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything."
Researching Cambodia's Ocean Since 2008
Join our team today
"The best way to observe a fish is to become a fish."
Jacques Yves Cousteau, Oceanographer
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"Cultures have long heard wisdom in non-human voices: Apollo, god of music, medicine and knowledge, came to Delphi in the form of a dolphin. But dolphins, which fill the oceans with blipping and chirping, and whales, which mew and caw in ultramarine jazz - a true rhapsody in blue - are hunted to the edge of silence."
You have found us!! Thank you for your passion and interest in Marine Conservation and Marine Research in Cambodia.
Welcome to our Volunteer Marine Conservation Project and welcome to our website, we hope that whilst looking through our site you will begin to see our vision of marine conservation and marine research here in Cambodia and the dedication, passion and responsibility we have to conserve and protect the areas we have been entrusted with.
At Marine Conservation Cambodia we work continuously throughout the year on the conservation, research and restoration of Cambodia's marine resources with a special focus on the marine environments and marine issues in Kep Province. Our permenant dedicated conservation and research team is out on the water daily, monitoring, researching and protecting the health of the reefs, seagrass beds and other sensitive marine habitats all with the purpose of conserving the Ocean we have fallen in love with..
Once you join our team you will find we are not your average volunteer project, with or without volunteers our team and our project makes a continuous positive impact, we have a very passionate team that has given up their everyday lives to dedicate their time to protecting Cambodia's marine resources, we really are just a big family. At MCC we offer a volunteer marine conservation experience like no other organization can. Being that we are a small grass roots family run organisation it allows us more flexibility in what we can offer to our volunteers and interns. We are not an International NGO or large worldwide charity, but a small local registered NGO right here in Cambodia. Many of the large voluntourism organizations and NGO’s are bound by extremely tight rules and regulations, which hinder many activities that a volunteer or intern can participate in. Here at Marine Conservation Cambodia we are not bound by these tight restrictions allowing our volunteers a once in a lifetime opportunity and ultimately the freedom to be involved in all aspects of a real marine conservation and marine research project.
We can prepare you for active in-field marine research, our training schedules allow our volunteers the opportunity to learn standard and specific reef and Seagrass monitoring methodologies, including detailed knowledge of substrates (including Coral and Seagrass species), invertebrates and fish (including In depth Seahorse identification), and of course become involved in our ground breaking seahorse research or participate in our new Marine Mammal project. Once you have completed your initial training you will become fully immersed in our monthly research schedule and are able to participate in daily scientific marine survey dives collecting important data that helps us monitor not only the changes happening within our newly created MFMA (marine fisheries management area) and the small MPA's (marine protected areas) within it, but also gathering crucial data on Cambodia's seahorse and dolphin populations. We also organise regular meetings with local fishing communities to collect information regarding their thoughts and needs regarding the status of their fishing grounds. Our team specialises in Seahorse research as it was Seahorses, or rather the threats to them that initially started what is now MCC, our new project on marine mammals is quickly becoming as loved as our seahorse work and we hope it will be the basis of a full monitoring program that will benefit all of Cambodia's marine mammals.
As our conservation organization as progressed, we are also now very much involved in marine management/resource planning, with a lot of our time dedicated to the creation of Marine Fisheries Management areas, and the respective management of those areas. Our other main area of expertise is IUU (Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported Fishing) with our director sitting as co-chair on the Fisheries National Sub-commitee for IUU and MCC recently completing a country wide IUU hotspot report for the EU, our work on IUU is making a direct impact on tackling many problems that affect to Cambodia's coastal fisheries.
We are not some standardised conservation holiday, we use your time, energy and money to protect Cambodia's and specifically Kep's marine environment, once trained the data you collect and the reports you will be involved in preparing, are used by both national and provincial authorities to plan, manage and protect Cambodia's marine habitats and resources. Our last Conservation Zoning proposal which was completed in 2016 by our research team and our long staying volunteers has led to the creation of Cambodia's second Marine Fisheries Management area and created an extended conservation area around our base on Koh Seh Island, that report can be found here.
Want to do more for marine conservation then just collect data? So do we! And we do! You can also join us on our privately owned boats to actively patrol our MPA and actually stop illegal/destructive fishing! Yes that is correct. Marine Conservation Cambodia volunteers are allowed to join our observational patrol teams supporting us while we actively stop illegal boats within our protected area, confiscate illegal fishing equipment, and force the illegal and destructive fishers to dump their catches back into the ocean. You can also get involved in our artificial shellfish reef/anti trawling devices and underwater landscaping projects and for those that are interested begin to learn about the issues, difficulties and solutions to engaging in marine conservation in a newly developing country such as Cambodia.
Do you already have a specific conservation, marine science or related area that you are studying or looking to study? Are you looking for a hands on academic internship? At MCC we are passionate about education on marine/coastal conservation and research, we want you to not only contribute to our project, but to feel that you have also increased your own potential, increased your own abilities and developed your potential career whilst volunteering with us. Our conservation and research team is there to facilitate your learning experience and make sure you get exactly what you need from your stay with us wether its your passion to conserve the ocean or your need to fulfil university course requirements. Volunteers are also encouraged to bring their own ideas with them. From, ICM (integrated coastal management) to aquaculture projects to new scientific techniques MCC welcomes your idea!
You can read some of the feelings of our previous volunteers here
If you want to know more please look over our website and please feel free to email us with any questions.
For those interested in Academic Internships please find our Application Form Here.
Thanks again from the team at Marine Conservation Cambodia.