Sept. 11, 2002 – The Friends of the V.I. National Park has taken its friends-of-the-environment message on the road via audiovisual packages presented to both University of the Virgin Islands campuses, the V.I. Environmental Resources Station, Cinnamon Bay Campground, Maho Bay Camps, and six middle and high schools on St. Thomas and St. John.
The packages include a nine-minute DVD, "V.I. Tropical Marine Ecosystems," produced by the Friends in collaboration with the U.S. Geological Survey, a 27-inch color television, a VCR/DVD player, and an audiovisual cart.
The Friends produced the DVD to inspire a sense of stewardship in the territory's marine environment. It covers the different habitats that surround coral reef ecosystems, including mangroves, coral reefs and sea grass beds. The DVD also discusses the natural and human causes for the decline in the territory's marine eco-system.
The schools receiving the packages were Coral Bay and Julius E. Sprauve on St. John; and All Saints, Antilles, Charlotte Amalie and Ivanna Eudora Kean on St. Thomas.
"The partnerships formed with our high schools are truly one of the greatest successes of this DVD project," Joe Kessler, Friends president, said in a release. He said the project has paved the way for future endeavors with the high schools.
Sprauve School Principal Shirley Joseph said the audiovisual package will be used to increase students' awareness and help them understand why it is important to protect tropical marine ecosystems.
Kim Lyons, Friends development director, said the audiovisual packages cost $20,000 to produce. They were made possible by a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, money raised by the Friends group and funding from an anonymous donor, she said.
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