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Pod Volunteer - Volunteers under the sea in Thailand

Date added: Friday 6th October 2017

Rachel joined the Pod Volunteer’s award winning Marine Conservation team in Thailand to support conservation and research initiatives on the beautiful tropical island of Koh Tao.

We caught up with Rachel when she got back home to find out all about her time volunteering:

“Volunteering was one of the best experiences of my life. The team were very sportive and always managed to make even the boring tasks such as data entry fun! Conservation diving is so much more rewarding than the usual fun dives you can do as a tourist, you learn not only about the reef ecosystem but also how to respect it while diving and snorkelling (it’s surprising how many people don't!) and how to protect it from the everyday things we do on land that are causing huge problems for the oceans.

I made so many friends and hopefully future colleges during my time at this project, it was invaluable to my future studies, career and helped me to develop as a person and a scientist in ways I had not even thought about before joining the course.

What did you find most rewarding?
Seeing how the artificial reef structures we were working on develop and grow during my time and also seeing the improvement in my own learning about identification of various species of marine organisms.

What did you find most challenging?
Leaving.

What advice would you give to others who are considering this marine conservation Pod Volunteer placement?
Go. And remember to be open to all the new experiences and opportunities Koh Tao and the team will offer you”

With coral Reefs covering less than 2% of the ocean floor but supporting 25% of all marine life research is the only way to get a true idea of what the problems are and what needs to be done to alleviate them. Volunteers contribute a great deal to the ongoing research in Thailand by collecting data that would otherwise be too difficult to collect.

To join the team you do not need to have any dive qualifications as you can gain your open water and advanced qualifications when you arrive at the project.

You can find more about the Marine Conservation project and how you can start your volunteer journey withe Pod Volunteer here: www.podvolunteer.org/projects/marine-conservation-thailand