Project Baseline UK
This community of volunteer scuba divers are passionate about citizen science. Using effective teamwork and scientific diving techniques, they document marine sites around the UK to raise awareness of environmental challenges. As well as running local outreach, education and clean-up events, the real strength of their organisation is in their collaboration with scientific and conservation bodies, to whom they provide reliable, quality data in support of research and conservation efforts.
Project Baseline UK is a community of volunteer scuba divers who are passionate about using citizen science to protect our oceans. Teams around the UK spend their free time exploring and documenting their local marine environments, and the information they collect is submitted to an international database to track changes over time and provide evidence of any degradation.
Projects that the divers have contributed to over the last year include Blue Marine Foundation habitat surveys in Eyemouth, sediment collection for antibiotics research and microplastics research, and working with the Ocean Conservation Trust to restore important seagrass habitats.
As well as their work collecting data, the team also run regular outreach/educational events during their projects and organise additional local clean up events around the waters where their teams are based.
The funds provided by the Matthew Good foundation would represent a very large source of funding for the organisation. All the funds will go towards increasing the amount of days they can spend supporting community projects.
The majority of their efforts involve self-funded volunteer divers whose most significant cost is the boat charters that are essential to access marine sites. As an example it costs approximately £70 for a team member to participate in a one day project, so a grant of £1000 would halve the costs for over 30 divers worth of effort. A phenomenal amount could be achieved with 30 diver’s time, such as the near complete removal and disposal of debris from a community location.
The team would also like to increase visibility of their efforts in an attempt to better raise awareness of the importance of our oceans on a global and local community scale. To do this they would also fund additional marketing materials, such as infographics for display at outreach events.