Maldives National University visit

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Chef John shows off his organic garden

This week we had an exciting visit from students studying at the Maldives National University. The visit was initiated by our very own IVD Captain, Afrah Abdulla, who studies Hotel and Resort Management part time at the University. Together we arranged activities for them throughout the day to supplement their studies which revolve around sustainable tourism. Following an island tour in the morning, the days activities were handed over to Executive Chef John Bakker. He treated them to an insightful tour of the organic garden and eco-centre, explaining what could be grown in the garden and how this benefits our resort, as well as showing off our glass crusher and can compressor in the eco centre!

Learning all about coral

The afternoon was then reserved for me, the Marine Biologist and Environmental Officer. Afrah had been telling his class mates all about our Coral Lines Project, and so I introduced the students to this reef rehabilitation initiative with an interesting lecture. I could talk about the project all day, but I decided the best way to learn was to get out onto the beach and plant the Coral Lines together!

The students all tried their hands at fragmenting the coral, placing the fragments in the rope, and measuring the corals with calipers. Within the hour, we had prepared two coral lines which I planted in the nursery later that day.

Following a short coffee break, we headed back to the lecture hall for the second lesson of the day. This was all about corporate sustainability and our Gili SEAS policy (Social & Environmental Awareness and Sustainability). This lecture was all about the importance of awareness within a business, but also touched on why we should conduct regular audits for waste, water and energy or become eco-accredited by companies such as Earth Check, and the solutions we can create following such audits including the possibilities of streaming for renewable energies within the business.

The MNU team with their two Coral Lines!

It’s great that the future tourism managers are having such a heavy focus on corporate sustainability within their studies, and it makes us proud at Gili Lankanfushi to be able to show these students all the great things we do as a business to become more sustainable.

To see the progress of MNU’s two Coral Lines, click HERE for line 059, and HERE for line 060.