$25K Invested in Raising the Next Generation of Marine Ecosystem Stewards
Hagåtña, Guam – Governor Lou Leon Guerrero and Lt. Governor Josh Tenorio, together with the Bureau of Statistics and Plans, presented 10,000 coastal education coloring books to the Guam Department of Education on January 30, 2023 at M.U. Lujan Elementary School in Yo’ña.
The books provide an interactive experience for elementary students to learn about Guam’s unique marine and terrestrial environments and to identify important environmental issues facing the island, such as invasive species, erosion control, marine debris, coral reefs, and threats to the local ecosystem. The Bureau of Statistics and Plans’ Guam Coastal Management Program received $25,000 through the Education Stabilization Fund – Governor’s Youth Empowerment and Education Assistance Grant Program to produce 20,000 activity and coloring books.
“As an island people, we have intimately experienced the effects of the climate crisis, which has moved us to increase our stewardship efforts through powerful educational outreach,” said Governor Leon Guerrero. “At a young age, so many of us naturally learn the importance of taking care of our land and sea. With these new resources, we ensure that the next generation of environmental stewards has the knowledge they need to protect our fragile marine ecosystem.”
“In addition to the endeavors currently led by our teams at the University of Guam Center for Island Sustainability and Sea Grant, it is equally important that we invest in the future of sustainability and those who will continue to lead these efforts,” said Lt. Governor Tenorio. “Our administration is committed to rebuilding an island worthy of our children and an island that is more than capable of sustaining the progress and prosperity we are working towards together.”
The Guam Coastal Adventure Activity Coloring book was written and illustrated by Cara Lin, a Guam Coral Reef Management fellow, and edited with input from local natural resource managers, including Whitney Hoot, Guam Coral Reef Initiative program manager, and Marie Auyong, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) affiliate. The Chief Hurao Academy also provided input to ensure the book features accurate CHamoru language references. The second activity book, “Understanding Marine Debris,” features information and activities for children to identify and learn about the importance of preventing marine debris from entering the ocean. The book is an original product of the NOAA Marine Debris Program.