In 2015, after recent visits by the Board and Senior Management of SeaKeepers, it was agreed that with the heightened consciousness of conservation in Singapore and surrounding region, it was timely to start to reach out to the region’s yacht owners and general public.
The International SeaKeepers Society established SeaKeepers Asia with the launch event Singapore 3D chaired by Board Member, Julian Chang and his wife, Sandra. This expansion with a new chapter in Asia is also under the leadership of Julian Chang, who is also an active member of the yachting and shipping industry in Singapore and China. He has been tasked with expanding the success of SeaKeepers’ programs to this region.
Building upon established international programming, the focus in Asia is on creating better local awareness of the current situation of our oceans in order to build a sense of appreciation and commitment to protect, conserve, and restore when possible.
Whilst these projects may not be applied in the same scale and manner as in the other regions of the world, with our core group of volunteers, our mission still is to save the oceans by applying the motto:
Research. Educate. Protect and Restore.
Our operations run parallel to the headquarters of SeaKeepers in Miami, Florida, with a main focus on expanding the impact of the DISCOVERY Yacht Program. This program includes the three essential aspects of DISCOVERY Yachts Programming:
- Education & Outreach Programs target youth and learning experiences aboard DISCOVERY Yachts that serve as “floating classrooms.” These programs will focus on marine wildlife, plastic pollution, and sustainability practices. Participants will include local schools and national organizations.
- Instrument Deployments are utilized for ocean monitoring through the deployment of SeaKeeper drifters, Argo Floats, BRUVs (baited remote underwater videos). SeaKeepers works with institutions within the USA, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Global FinPrint of FIU, World Meteorological Organization (WMO), and Argo, to make ongoing oceanographic measurements. Data collected is used for oil spill and marine debris accumulation analyses, weather and hurricane prediction models, satellite quality control, and to better understand the marine environment.
- Scientist-Led Expeditions are conducted by leading researchers aboard DISCOVERY Yachts. SeaKeepers works with experts in the fields of marine science and oceanography to promote and facilitate groundbreaking research, as well as providing yacht owners, guests, and crew the opportunity to utilize their vessel to serve as an at-sea research platform.
Building upon established international programming, the focus in Asia will be on creating better local awareness of the current situation of our oceans in order to build a sense of appreciation and commitment to protect, conserve, and restore when possible.
The mix of programming is planned as follows:
- 60% Educational Outreach Programs
- 15% Community Activities
- 15% Instrument Deployments
- 10% Scientific Expeditions
Singapore Program Highlights
Expedition Aboard D/Y Asean Lady
On December 5, 2016, fifteen children from the Girls Club and Gift of Music Group of Tasek Jurong Limited came aboard D/Y Asean Lady to learn about marine invertebrates. Researchers from the National University of Singapore lead the lesson and participants collected planktonic organisms in Raffles marina and then examined them using microscopes onboard. Learn More.
Expedition Aboard D/Y Lady Jo
On July 29, 2016, DISCOVERY Yacht members David and Jo Haines hosted students from Ang Mo Kio Secondary School in Singapore aboard the D /Y Lady Jo as part of an Educational Outreach Program .On the vessel, scientists Dr. Ng Ngan Kee and her team from the National University of Singapore facilitated a unique learning excursion for these students geared toward maximizing their engagement with real science. Learn more.
Expedition Aboard D/Y Lady Jo
On July 27, 2016, DISCOVERY Yacht members David and Jo Haines hosted students from Deyi Secondary School in Singapore aboard the D /Y Lady Jo as part of an Educational Outreach Program .On the vessel, scientists Dr. Toh Tai Chong and his team from the National University of Singapore facilitated a unique learning excursion for these students geared toward maximizing their engagement with real science. Learn more.
Expedition Onboard D/Y Asean Lady
On March 14, 2016, SeaKeepers Asia conducted its inaugural educational outreach day in conjunction with the Singapore American School. Students joined Dr. NG Ngan Kee, a lecturer and research associate from the National University of Singapore, to learn about coastal development and local marine life onboard D/Y Asean Lady at Raffles Marina, Singapore. Learn More.
A Focus on Youth
Our core focus is the International SeaKeepers Society Outreach Program. Targeted at youth, learning experiences are aboard DISCOVERY Yachts that are transformed “floating classrooms”. The outreach program is composed of two stages. The first is schoolchildren who are invited on board DISCOVERY Yachts (private vessels supplied by members of the Society) and participate in marine-based lessons with experts from various fields of science. The second stage is the sharing of this knowledge at the school premises to allow for deeper facilitation of the program’s curriculum.
SeaKeepers works with institutions, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and Argo, to make ongoing oceanographic measurements with SeaKeepers Drifters and Argo floats. Additionally we are promoting Global FinPrint of Florida International University (FIU). Global FinPrint is a Paul G. Allen initiative which deploys BRUVs (baited remote underwater videos) to execute the largest global survey of reef sharks and rays.
Community engagement is a key component to create awareness of ocean research, conservation, and restoration. Plans are currently underway to celebrate International Ocean Day.
SeaKeepers typically hosts signature events throughout the year that highlight aspects of our programming and achievements to date. SeaKeepers events attract prominent yachtsmen, business leaders, philanthropists, and like minded individuals. SeaKeepers Asia hosts the Asia Awards Dinner every year, hosted by Dinner Chairs Julian and Sandra Chang. At this annual event, local leadership and educators are recognized for their extraordinary efforts and commitment towards marine conservation. The SeaKeepers of Singapore Award and the SeaKeepers Asia Achievement Award are presented on this occasion.