|What turtles teach us - 02/02/2012|
|And speaking of good news... The Sunday 29 January edition of the newspaper Ethnos Kyriakis had a two-page spread on ARCHELON and the Rescue Centre, including an interview with Centre Coordinator Pavlos Tsaros, and photos of the facilities, the volunteers and of course some of the turtles being cared for. In case you missed it, you can see it here on the newspaper’s website: http://www.ethnos.gr/entheta.asp?catid=23310&subid=2&pubid=63607464. |
The article is in Greek, but here’s a brief summary in English of what it said.
The title of the article was ARCHELON: What turtles teach us, and focused on volunteerism, using ARCHELON and the Rescue Centre as a key example of what volunteerism means, its importance to society, and its benefits to both the group it helps as well as to the volunteers themselves. Centre Coordinator Pavlos Tsaros provided lots of information, including the following:
ARCHELON was conceived in 1977 by Dimitris and Anna Margaritoulis, when they happened to come in contact with sea turtles for the first time while they were on holiday with their children on Zakynthos. In 1983, ARCHELON was officially founded, and in 1984, received an award for its work from the Academy of Athens.
Today, ARCHELON has a permanent staff of only nine people, while more than 500 volunteers each year take part in the various programmes and projects it undertakes not only to save sea turtles, but to protect the environment and to increase public awareness about the dangers threatening the existence of sea turtles and what can be done to help them.
According to Pavlo, ‘The turtles teach us how to live a simple, self-sufficient life, needing only the essentials to survive. And they are very wise – how else could they have survived on this planet for millions of years?’
He described how talking to ARCHELON volunteers many years ago led him to act on his interests in environmental matters instead of being just an observer. His life changed dramatically, and although his job involves sacrifices, it is very rewarding.
Pavlo also talked about the importance of each individual taking an active role – both for local as well as global issues – rather than sitting back and waiting for the government to do everything, and the positive trend of the concept of volunteerism becoming more and more accepted in the Greek culture, resulting in more Greeks taking part in volunteer projects.
The article ended with his statement, ‘Species are disappearing from our planet at a nightmarish pace. Let’s not forget that we are not the privileged species on the planet: We are simply one of the species.’