Service BVI AdventureBritish Virgin Islands
Preserving Paradise In the British Virgin Islands

A vision of paradise? Yes... yet the tourism it attracts threatens to upset the delicate ecological balance, and our core environmental projects are based around some of these issues...

This unique program is run as part of our GoBeyond service programs where you will live with the rest of your service team aboard a sailing vessel. Living aboard allows us to visit most every island while providing a perfect floating home. It's refreshing to be out on the water where there are cool breezes, and a great sense of camaraderie comes from working together as a crew.

While in Tortola, we work with a number of organizations. Working with the National Parks Trust we help to re-propagate the badly damaged mangrove systems, which provide sea defense as well as a protected nursery habitat for many juvenile marine species. We collect seedlings, replant them along exposed shores and monitor existing nursery sites and mangrove forests. We also make ourselves available to the Virgin Islands Search and Rescue organization. We do projects they have little time for, as they maintain readiness for their missions.

Thanks to the coral reefs, the waters surrounding the BVI are home to amazing sea life. The National Parks Trust has placed moorings in the most sensitive reef areas where the snorkeling and diving boats have, in the past, caused great damage with their anchors. As we sail our home from island to island, one of our projects is to monitor and provide feedback to the Parks on the condition of these moorings as well as information on number and types of craft utilizing this resource. It's another way we can help keep the reefs pristine while allowing safer access for all to explore undersea.

The Department of Environment and Fisheries is involved in many aspects of monitoring and protecting the environment in the British Virgin Islands and we work with them specifically in the tagging and releasing of sea turtles. Slick, Rapido, Maddy-Hazel-Bob and Wamza are just a few of the names Lifeworkers gave to the 250+ sea turtles we have tagged and released over the years.

At intervals, we visit schools and community centers to develop full days of activities and programming for the local children. Like kids everywhere, BVI kids love to play games, do crafts, play with magic tricks and make toy airplanes fly in loops. It's a lot of fun and everyone grows from working together and building friendships.

Other projects include church and community shelter painting, beach trash surveys for the National Parks Trust, community clean-ups as well as local construction projects with the Jost Van Dyke Preservation Society.

While service work forms the core of our experience, you'll become an accomplished sailor as you and your team navigate the waters of the BVI. We'll also find ample time to snorkel the reefs, climb Mount Sage, barbecue on the beach, listen to steel bands as the day winds down and sleep in a hammock out on deck under a blanket of Caribbean stars.

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