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Go Slow In Caye Caulker 

Go slow, this is the lifestyle here on Caye Caulker. Sadly the time does not slow down. I can not belive that it has been two weeks already. Immediately after my arrival on camp and a warm welcome by our dog Fury it felt like home to me. Since then, we volunteers and the staff members got to know each other and grew together as a community. It is astonishing how a group of different people from all over the world (South Africa, England, Scotland, the US, Switzerland, or Germany), with different background and age groups are able to work as a team to reach a common goal. The daily bonfires with marshmallows and live guitar music is a result of the successful group dynamic.  Go slow, as relaxed and easy it can be to follow this lifestyle, is for me personally sometime hard to follow. Before I came here to Caye Caulker I had an organized daily schedule and finished my studies. For a German, those unscheduled days can be painful at first. Which is not a bad thing but a welcomed an necessary change. I realized, that those days can be most enjoyable. It does not mean that the life on camp is unorganized, it is not as fixed as it used to be for me. Luckily, I am already an advanced diver which means I could go diving at my second day on camp. Which was also my first encounter with three manatees, beautiful creatures of the ocean.

Since then, I assisted at fish surveys. I could not conduct them myself, because I had to learn over 100 species of different fish. Finally, a task which needed some planning and brainpower. It was wunderful to be able to identify the fish I saw on my last dive and snorkel adventures. We do not only dive and enjoy the beauty of the reef. We also clean up a forest trail, which was destroyed by the hurrical last year. Additionaly, every Saturday we do a beach clean on the southern part of Caye Caulker, the part with all the touristic attractions and where most of the people are living. Last Saturday we got help by some children, locals and tourists. It made them and me sad to see the massive amount of dirt and garbage on the beach. But the acknowledgement of our work by the locals help to keep those activities alive. It also proves, that our work does affect the people and has a small impact on the environment. Two weeks left. Time for me to go slow and enjoy my stay here at camp.


Vinzenz Särchen - Belize Marine Conservation Volunteer


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