«A wish comes true» from the ARCHELON volunteers in the South Gulf of Kyparissia
9 year old Noah is a big fan of sea turtles of any kind. His biggest wish was to see the little ones from up close, the moment they start their long journey, when they come out from the warm sand and head for the vast sea.
The members of “Make a wish” in Switzerland contacted ARCHELON in order to fulfill young Noahʼs wish, a big fan of the sea turtles. So, in the summer of 2014 the volunteers and the staff of the Sea Turtle Protection Society helped this fervent wish come true during the program in the gulf of Kyparissia.
The first day of their visit the volunteers welcomed Noah and his family. They gave a volunteer T-shirt to the little sea turtle fan and of course a book with all the necessary information on the Societyʼs programs and actions.
The next 15 days Noah had the opportunity to learn more about the Caretta-caretta sea turtle and its protection. Like a proper ARCHELON volunteer he participated in the morning survey where he found nests of the protected species and placed protection screens to protect the eggs from natural enemies.
He took part in the night survey and he saw the adult turtles making their nests from up close. Noah also saw an injured turtle that had been attacked by dogs. The ARCHELON volunteers gave our little friend the chance to name the turtle so the turtle was named “Athena”. After having been provided with first aid and because she had suffered minor injuries, “Athena” was released. Noah and his family were there and they helped actively during “Athena”s release.
Our little friendʼs big moment arrived when his wish came true. For two nights he observed the hatchlings coming out of their nests on the Kalo Nero beach and heading, with the help of the ARCHELON volunteers, for the bright horizon of the sea. He was even impressed by the fact that the little turtles, after their long journey in our seas, come back to the very same beach after 20 years to make their own nests!
When he returned home to his country, our little friend explained to the members of “Make a wish” in Switzerland that he hopes that ARCHELON continues the hard work for the protection of the sea turtles so that the endangered species can make nests on the Greek beaches for many years to come. The time he spent in the south gulf of Kyparissia will always remain in Noahʼs heart. He even promised to come back again as a volunteer when he turns 18 to help protect the Caretta-caretta sea turtle and its habitats!
Noah, weʼll be waiting for you!
(translation: Garyfallia Liepouri)