When you live in Playa del Carmen, you inevitably will notice the many dogs and cats in need in the streets. This is by the way not only in Playa del Carmen a big issue, but also all over Mexico and in many other warm countries. Why is it like that?
Climate doesn’t necessitate that animals are housed in buildings. A small village can balance the number of offspring more naturally and people also have better possibilities to care for their animals as they work at home. In the city, however, most people leave their houses for work and unfortunately for the animal, they will stay unguarded outside in the streets. This leads inescapably to overpopulation that can be fought on a long-term basis only with periodical sterilisation events/ permanent sterilisation clinics.
All my animals I live with are pure street “breed” that I directly saved from death. I have rescued many more as my sense for justice and my love for the animals just require that I help an injured or sick animal. Many of my friends donated directly to me to help these animals. An official organisation may be more reputable for many others that they can trust that donations are used directly and I hope that the combination of my recommendation and their public occurs convince many more friends that even the smallest amount donated can make a huge change for the single animal. Together we create a better world.
Sometimes the only way I can help is that I volunteer to take the dogs for a walk, to give them their medicine, to wash them or just to pet them and play with them. For that reason, I am especially connected to Playa Animal Rescue PAR as they are only a very short distance from my home away, they always need a helping hand and they already helped me so many times. All divers that find me through PAR (just mention it during reservation) will donate indirectly to PAR as I tgive a part of my turnover to them. The more you dive, the more PAR’s dogs get. Of course, please feel free to make a direct contribution to PAR.
Additionally, I support other local organisations like Coco´s Cat Rescue and Tierra de Animales as much as I can.
This picture shows how I say good-bye to Bernie who I fostered for several months after he had been living more than 5 years in the shelter. Bernie, by the way was the last unadopted pup of the last litter of my dog Fresa and lives now happily with his new family in Canada.
By nature of the activity cavern or cave divers come in close contact with the jungle. Every day we drive to another beautiful cenote entrance and enjoy our diving activities. What is noted that landowners for diveable cenotes take not always good care of their treasure or do not understand the responsibility they have while dealing with tourism. While it is arguably fruitless to discuss who has to clean the trash out of the jungle, the landowner that earns through entrances fees or the tourist that brought the plastic and other garbage in the first place, it will also not solve the problem.
In many state parks throughout the US that are so huge that guards just cannot clean all traces of the visitors there, they implemented the rule of “take with out out what you brought in”.
There are few very simple steps you can take to help to get our excursion eco-friendly.
- Buy a gallon of drinking water and refill your smaller plastic bottle everyday. Leave the empty water bottle only the last day with me and I take care to dispose it properly. Please note that some people prefer to have sealed bottles for hygienic reasons and therefore, I always will offer new water bottles (of a size that normally one is good for a half day excursion). These used bottles will be recycled as well.
- Softdrinks in cans is what I prefer more than plastic bottles as the metal can be recycled endlessly and has in my opinion a better ecological balance.Get your Coke or Sprite of Iced Tea in a can.
- Alu recycling has been practised for many years already here in Playa del Carmen as micro entrepreneurs collect the cans out of trash cans in the streets every night. You may help them if you put your beverages of last nights get-together in a separate bag on the street or simple ask me for the collection points of the municipal recycling (this does not work in any of the resorts). There is a rudimentary recycling structure already in place in Playa del Carmen and there are several collecting stations throughout the town.
- Use biodegradeable suntan lotion and mosquito repellent. Ask me, I normally have a repellant creme in my car.
- Pick up trash from others – we don’t have to clean the whole place, but it gives a good example and we help others to understand the importance by showing responsibility for nature.
- use rechargeable batteries and if or safety reason you do not want to rely on these, do not dispose used batteries here but take them home.
- Of course, best thing would be to avoid garbage at all.
You will find these small posters on some of the cavern and cave dive sites here in the area. Come diving with me and be part of the solution and not of the problem. A fraction of the profit will be used towards ecologic projects like this.
When I returned from my holidays in May, I had a little slack time so when I got the invitation to participate in a crossover course to become a cave II instructor with FMAS (Federacion Mexicana de Actividades Subacuatica) held in Playa del Carmen on May, 23rd, 2012 in cenote Ponderosa. The preceding evening was for registration and information and in total 4 local cave instructors decided to cross over. Thank you to German Yanez and Bruno Espinosa for your great presentations.
The Cave II level o FMAS/CMAS is a bit more orientated for the technical cave diver requiring that the diver is Advanced Nitrox certified and on some dives stage tanks are required. An interesting second course I am now able to offer is the FMAS course for cavern and cave guiding.
Please ask for more information about the courses, detailed prerequisites etc.