Indonesian version of SECORE’s kids comic has launched
Teaching children about the importance of the ocean and the various consequences of marine pollution is one of the focus topics of the Indonesian Waste Platform. Manager Nina van Toulon (right) and her network of volunteers also organize beach or community clean-ups with many children involved. (photos: Indonesian Waste platform)
SECORE: Nina, where did you see or hear about our comic?
I actually found it on Google, while I was searching for ocean conservation related learning materials. The Indonesian Waste Platform is Indonesia’s waste Think Tank – or in other words: We are the hub of our country’s ocean plastic and waste management community. We not only build bridges between the government and local stakeholders to solve Indonesia’s waste management problem; our website also serves as an open-source platform for more than 3500 people involved in the waste movement – many of them who are educators. One of our focus topics is marine pollution and marine conservation. We work on education and capacity building of stakeholders in our network. Indonesia is the largest archipelago on this planet with more than 17,000 islands. The sea is part of life, providing jobs and food. Many communities depend on a healthy marine environment. Therefore, having learning materials about reef conservation is highly relevant for Indonesia.
A boy on his bicycle in Sabang, Indonesia. (Artyom PJ/ Unsplash.com)
Does that mean you are going to share the comic with lots of conservationists and teachers?
Yes, through our network we will be able to encourage educators to use the comic for spreading awareness about the importance of healthy reefs. We are living right in The Coral Triangle and millions of kids are related to the sea. They grow up in fishing communities and in tourism hotspots, like Bali, Flores, and Raja Ampat, but the topic of reef conservation is not included in the general school curriculum. Teaching kids about the importance of reefs and their conservation is mostly done by local organizations, which will be able to use the comic as learning material in the communities where they are active. To have this comic available online and for free is wonderful for two reasons: First of all, an online magazine is so much easier to distribute. Secondly, Indonesia is a developing country and most local organizations and schools have a low budget. We are connected to many forums on social media and can reach many people. We are also collaborating with Malaysians Against Marine Debris and stakeholders there will be able to read the translated version as well.
The Indonesian version of SECORE's kids comic can be downloaded for free here.
Have you seen a change in the way that people in Indonesia are caring about the ocean and reefs in particular?
Marine Protected Areas have been established in some places, but that is not enough. More needs to be done. However, Indonesia is such a large country. It is a challenge to reach everybody. But certain things are changing, indeed. For instance: Indonesia is a popular destination for diving and snorkeling. I live in Komodo, one of ten newly developed tourism hotspots. It is on the ‘wish list’ of divers around the world. The number of dive operators has grown fast over the past ten years. Many of them are involved in local programs for community development or in conservation efforts such as marine debris cleanups.
What do you think: Can a comic help to protect coral reefs?
Yes, education is the key and kids are the future. Thanks to SECORE for making this comic available for Indonesian children!
We thank you and your team for translating Coral Heroes into Indonesian and being part of letting the Heroes travel around the world! We hope that many kids dive into the reefs of Towabonga and enjoy learning more about the fascinating world of coral reefs!
All different versions of our kids comic “Coral Heroes – Adventures on the Reefs of Towabonga” can be found here We provide a low-resolution web-version of the magazine and a high-resolution print version for those who want to hand-out paper copies to print the magazine at their own cost.