Hello, I’m Amelia. I am 21 years old and currently undertaking my 2nd year of studying Wildlife Conservation with Zoo Biology at the University of Salford. I have set up my own fundraising campaign to raise money for my travels to Sri Lanka for 4 weeks, starting at the beginning of June.
The trip involves exploring beautiful Sri Lanka as well as volunteering for 2 weeks in the coastal town of Ambalangoda. As I will be spending 4 weeks here I will be able to truly immerse myself in the local culture, spend time in the community and learn about what life is like for the people in Sri Lanka. I will also be visiting towns and World Heritage Sites such as Galle, Mirissa and Ella, as well as going on safari in Yala National Park.
Whilst volunteering I will be providing daily care and rehabilitation for the disabled turtles with the long term goal to release back into the wild as well as protecting turtle eggs that have been stolen by local poachers. I will be learning how to collect eggs and identify different species of sea turtle such as Hawksbill and Loggerhead. Duties include cleaning and refilling turtle tanks, feeding turtles, taking care of the nesting areas and releasing hatched baby turtles into the sea.
Volunteering provides direct care for the sea turtles but also includes designing education boards for the sanctuary to educate people of the importance of protecting and conserving sea turtles and conservation education sessions are also run at the community village school. Mass beach cleans across the Ambalangoda beach area are arranged regularly due to the impact of plastic pollution, it is not uncommon that after one beach clean 20 bags of litter are collected. It is crucial that the area is maintained as female turtles will only lay their eggs at beaches that are safe environments.
My university degree focuses on the threats animals face from around the world and ways in which we can help to conserve them. The opportunity to help protect and rehabilitate sea turtles first hand will be an amazing experience and will not only make a real impact of the survival of these beautiful creatures but the experience will aid my career after university.
As a university student, the cost for the project is an obstacle. As well as the volunteering fee that are many eternal costs such as flights, vaccinations and permits etc. I will be saving as much as possible from now until I leave in June. However, I would be extremely grateful for any donations from friends and family. Any donation no matter how big or small would help me on my way to volunteer in beautiful Sri Lanka and would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you so much for your time