JUST as ripples radiate from a stone dropped into water, Sorrento-based Polperro Dolphin Swims hopes to spread lessons from its Cool Changes climate action program.
Developed by Polperro in conjunction with Mornington Peninsula Shire Council, Cool Changes is a two staged program for community groups and schools.
As well as quoting the Dali Lama Polperro’s Judy Muir said Cool Changes was based on “our mantra: education plus inspiration (from nature) equals action (at a community level)”.
The Cool Changes program starts with two day-long free workshops, one for schools, another for community groups. The workshops will hear from speakers about the characteristics of “our changing climate and the impacts this has/will have on Port Phillip’s marine and coastal environments”.
Participants will board the Polperro for a tour to see “the beauty of the bay” and hear its crew speak about the impacts that climate change has had and will have on the marine environment.
Hands on activities will be held on the beach to show land-based impacts of climate change caused by coastal erosion and rising sea levels.
Schools and community groups will be provided with information about the impacts of climate change on Port Phillip as well as being able to network with other schools and community groups.
“Rather than just showing statistics, these workshops will be hands on and visual making the facts and figures real,” Muir said.
“As a follow up we will offer to visit organisations and deliver further programs that supports schools to embed climate change and actions into their curriculum and for community groups to include climate change in their planning documents and action plans.”
The second stage of the Cool Changes program will encourage schools and community groups to undertake climate actions to inform, educate and involve the wider community about the nature and impacts of climate change.
To help achieve this, Polperro will facilitate discussion and planning meetings and ask environmental groups to provide support, knowledge and expertise.
“We encourage people within the shire to become part of the Cool Changes program where one small change can have an enormous impact,” Muir said.
As the Dali Lama said: Just as ripples spread out when a single pebble is dropped in the water the actions of individuals can have far reaching consequences.”