It's my second volunteer project which I participated last year. And as I love diving I very much wanted to practice my skills. Have you ever worked as a volunteer? You should try it!!! Volunteering will give you the opportunity to have a visible impact and participate real conservation projects. After your PADI training, you will help to staff look for the rare Irrawaddy dolphin, you will try to find the well-hidden seahorse, you will help build and deploy anti-trawling structures.
But before the start, a project lets look around the city. Lay on the banks of the Mekong River, Phnom Penh is the largest city in Cambodia for its historic sites and beautiful colonial architectures. Although this place is covered by bustle and hustle, it still holds an old charm and calm atmosphere, with formal villages scattering on the riverfront and local markets.
Visit the National Museum and the Royal Palace to learn about Khmer’s artifacts or go the night market to find some interesting souvenirs and handcrafted things.
Welcome to Kep
Founded as a seaside retreat for the French elite in 1908 and a favoured haunt of Cambodian high-rollers during the 1960s, Kep (Krong Kep, also spelled Kaeb) is drawing tourists back with seafood, sunsets and hikes in butterfly-filled Kep National Park.
Kep has been beloved by Cambodians for generations and is still a popular vacation spot for people from Phnom Penh. Spend a couple days in this charming little town and you’ll start to see why. Whether you’re looking to get outside and do some hiking, eat a unique Cambodian meal that you can’t eat anywhere else, or just relax in the jungle overlooking the sea, Kep has all that and more to offer to the patient explorer.
Eating Crab at the Market
You simply cannot visit Kep without trying their traditional crab dishes. The blue crab of Kep is famous across all Cambodia. And they want you to know that, so they put up a massive statue of a blue crab right in their harbor. But all the drama aside, the crab from Kep might just be one of the most delicious meals in Cambodia.
Wildlife lovers will also enjoy Kep Oceanarium, run by Marine Conservation Cambodia on the Koh Tonsay pier. For $3 entry, it’s an interesting look around 32 aquariums including reef tanks and coral propagation areas.
So if you decided to do volunteering to research Seahorses.
The commercial trade in Seahorses, from target fisheries and by-catch fisheries, is currently thought by many different organizations to be the major threat to Seahorse conservation worldwide.
Seahorses were the main focus when was started Marine Conservation Cambodia, the team has now been working on securing the safety of Cambodia's seahorses since 2007. They have managed to stop most illegal collections of seahorses around the Islands of Koh Rong and Koh Rong Samleom, and they are now actively involved in stopping the illegal and destructive fishing within Kep province that is destroying the local seahorse populations and critical habitats, here are some of the ways that together with volunteers they are achieving this:
Assist fishing communities, through education and training, developing the skills and legal authority they need to manage their local resources;
Restore degraded sea-grass beds and replant areas that have been degraded;
Use population and behavior marine survey techniques to record as much data as possible to assist in the conservation of these wonderful animals;
MOST IMPORTANTLY!! Actively patrol the Ocean to catch and stop illegal and destructive fishers.
The weekly fee covers all of your accommodation, food, diving and other direct expenses needed to support you during your stay. It also includes a small amount that goes to cover project costs such as the Khmer staff wages, running and maintenance costs such as boats, electricity, water and materials needed to conduct the research.
For stays of 1 month or less, the weekly fee is $300.