|DEMA's Diving Community Champion Award recognizes DEMA Member companies using diving to benefit their communities and the public. Here we'd like to recognize and feature one of the nominees from the 2019 award season. Thank you for your contribution to our industry!
SCUBAnauts International (SNI) uses diving as a vehicle to build character and leadership in teens 12-18 through recreational research and conservation diving activities. With approximately 55 youth divers, SNI has conducted more than 600 dives in 2019, removing several hundred pounds of debris from local reefs, beaches and piers, transplanting more than 1,000 corals in Florida, North Carolina and Honduras, providing benthic and fish population data to Cayos Cochinos marine park managers, and collecting data on the coral disease outbreak in the Florida reef tract. Youth divers, called nauts, also run their own projects, including a blind study to quantitatively determine the impact on breathing nitrox on post-dive fatigue and determining the quality of habitat creation of made-made sea grass areas compared to those naturally occurring. Nauts are also required to present on their diving activities and how threats to the ocean impact every person living on land at local ocean-themed events. Our estimated annual educational reach to non-divers is 200,000.
- Nomination submitted by Katie Shoultz, SCUBAnauts International