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NZAEE Seaweek 2014 ‘Ocean Champion’ Winner Announced

Press Release - for immediate release Tuesday 4 March 2014

NZAEE Seaweek 2014 ‘Ocean Champion’ Winner Announced

NZAEE Seaweek is delighted to announce that the NZAEE Seaweek “Ocean Champion” for 2014 is Dunedin based marine conservation advocacy organisation Our Seas Our Future.

The New Zealand Coastal Society is sponsoring this new initiative for 2014 by donating $500 prize money for the winner which was presented by Chair Rick Liefting at the National Launch event last night on the Auckland Waterfront.

Nominations had flooded in for the 2014 NZAEE Seaweek “Ocean Champion” and voting was intense, but Our Seas Our Future was a stand out winner.

NZAEE Seaweek National Coordinator Dr Mels Barton is delighted that Our Seas Our Future has come out on top “The Ocean Champion initiative celebrates all those individuals, groups and organizations who work so hard to look after our seas and the marine life that lives in them. It is wonderful to have a winner who advocates and educates so effectively within the community about protecting our oceans and shows leadership by getting out there and doing the work in their local area.“

“NZAEE Seaweek congratulates Our Seas Our Future and their hardworking spokesperson Noel Jhinku for inspiring us all with their work, but all the nominees are Ocean Champions and anyone can be one just by taking care of their local beach. That’s the kind of guardianship that we hope the Ocean Champions programme will inspire in everyone ”.

Our Seas Our Future spokesperson Noel Jhinku said of the win “This is fantastic news for Our Seas Our Future. Recognition and support for the volunteer effort put into our community engagement projects is an encouraging boost for the group. A testament to volunteer dedication and passion for environmental conservation and education”.

The theme for NZAEE’s Seaweek 2014 is “Our fragile, finite taonga - be alert to the fragility of the marine environment and its treasures. Kia mataara! Tiakina te au o te moana, he kōpīpī tōna”. The theme highlights how precious this amazing resource is that we call the sea.

More than 150 events are scheduled around the country during NZAEE Seaweek 2014 from March 1-9, and these are all listed on the NZAEE Seaweek website atwww.seaweek.org.nz.



NZAEE Seaweek 2014 is coordinated by the New Zealand Association for Environmental Education (NZAEE) and proudly supported by ASB Community Trust, Department of Conservation, NZ Marine Studies Centre, University of Otago, Auckland Council, the DSP Print Group Ltd and many local sponsors.

Our Seas Our Future is a non-profit marine conservation organisation based in Dunedin. Our Seas Our Future aims to protect New Zealand's coastal and marine ecosystems through advocacy, education, and environmental management, ensuring that they are managed sustainably and protected for future generations.

The New Zealand Coastal Society was formed in 1992 to promote and advance knowledge and understanding of the coastal zone. It provides a forum for those with an interest in the coastal zone to communicate amongst themselves and to the public.

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