Love the Oceans (LTO) is a non-profit marine conservation organisation working in Jangamo Bay, Mozambique since 2014. Jangamo, whilst home to a huge host of marine life, has never been studied in depth for any prolonged amount of time. LTO is working to protect and study the diverse marine life found here, including many species of sharks, rays and the famous humpback whales. We use research, education and diving to drive action towards a more sustainable future. Our ultimate goal is to establish a Marine Protected Area for the Inhambane Province in Mozambique, achieving higher biodiversity whilst protecting endangered species.
LTO does lots of different areas of research: ocean trash, coral reef surveys, humpback whales, megafauna and fisheries, as well as three community outreach projects, teaching marine conservation, swimming skills and running a sustainable fishing project in conjunction with the local fishing community.
So why is Love The Oceans different?
Jangamo, Love The Oceans’ local area, is typical of most of the coastline of Mozambique. 62% of Mozambicans live below the poverty line, less than 40% attend secondary education (13 -17yrs old), and in rural areas there is little law enforcement and historically almost zero interest in the conservation of marine resources. The rural location of Guinjata means LTO’s bottom-up, community- led approach is critical to ensure transformative, culturally-integrated change to conserve a habitat that is essential to this community’s survival.
A holistic approach is fundamental in enabling and empowering the local community to overcome barriers that may prevent a more sustainable way of life, and take responsibility of their natural resources. LTO works in two spaces: research and community outreach, both of which are as important as one another in achieving protection for this area. The research LTO collects is for publications to lobby for legislation change to protect different endangered species and habitats in our area.
Poverty alleviation and successful conservation are intrinsically linked. This means community outreach is essential to educate and provide opportunities to people to supplement their income and transition from unsustainable fishing to alternative livelihoods. This will not only feed their family and bring them out of poverty, but also benefit or preserve the environment. Poverty alleviation allows people the luxury to live a more sustainable life.
Love The Oceans has measurable impacts
LTO pride’s itself on making a tangible difference to environmental protection, awareness, as well as the local community they work with. This is just some of the facts and figures showing how LTO is making an impact since they started their work on the ground in July 2015.
• LTO has hosted 227 international volunteers and students in Mozambique
• They’ve collected over a tonne of trash off the beaches
• They’ve started a successful eco-brick initiative, turning beach plastic into construction materials – over 150 bricks have been made
• Over 85,000 pieces of plastic have been picked up off the beach
• 2310 hours of fisheries research has been logged over 276 days
• 312 hours of coral reef surveys have been completed
• 378 coral surveys covering 9.45km of reef have been completed
• 183hrs of whale surveys averaging 8 sightings an hour has been logged
• 851hrs of teaching basic marine resource management
• >1150 kids have been taught marine resource management
• 290hrs swimming lessons completed
• >800 kids have been taught basic swimming skills
• 10 classrooms have been completed at each school so the first ever high school can be established in the area
• 1st ever Swim Teacher Association Mozambique citizen qualified & 6 STA aquatic helpers qualified
• In 2019 Love The Oceans was recognised as 1 of 15 global grassroots #forcesforchange by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and received international recognition for our work.
• The area is soon to be recognised as a Hope Spot by Mission Blue and Sylvia Earle herself has personally backed the project.
• Sustainable Fishing Project launched to tackle illegal poaching and eliminate unsustainable fishing net use in the area.
• First Mozambican turtle patrol team launched in Jangamo.
Want more info?
If you want to read more about Love The Oceans or get involved in their work, you can check out their website and keep up-to-date with their daily activities via their social media: Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn (@lovetheoceans).