Article Index

Grand Batanga School, Cameroon, celebrates in Kribi

Our longstanding collaboration with the Bénévoles Océan in Cameroon met the proof of time and enabled again an active celebration of World Ocean Day in the coastal city of Kribi. The Grand Batanga schools groups participated in the 2023 edition with a large group of pupils of approximately 150 kids accompanied by their teachers. Volunteers came in support from Ngaoundéré, Douala and Yaoundé to do justice to this year's UN motto "Planet Ocean: Tides are Changing".

Under a menacing sky the Bénévoles des Océans reached the school at about 8h30. A fair number of pupils expected them already, plastic bottle in hand, which they had collected on the beach and elsewhere and impatiently waiting to learn how to recycle those bottles, led by their Principal, Mr. Massingo Éric Mesmin.

The ceremony started with a welcome by the principal, some teachers and pupils. Jeauberte Djamou, president of the Bénévoles des Océans, then launched the programme of the day by first distributing the T-shirts and then taking the initial family photo in front of the school information board.

The programme had several parts and was followed by the pupils with great motivation and engagement.

  • It started with raising awareness about the causes and consequences of various forms of pollution, particularly plastic pollution of the ocean and seas; that was now going to be addressed by a binding international agreement currently under negotiation which should be signed by the end of 2024 to reduce the threat considerably;

  • All kids and teachers then engaged in a big beach clean-up to make a practical contribution by collecting all plastic bottles they could retrieve;

  • With their 'harvest' of waste they learnt how to separate different types of waste and how to recycle the plastic bottles into tools and other useful objects for their schook, their homes or for use as toys etc;

  • A question and answer session followed with a focus on the UN motto of the day and testing the knowledge they had acquired during the trainings during which the best had also received some awards for good performance;

  • The kids also gathered statements about the importance of ocean protection.


At the end of these different activities the pupils had also understood how dangerous sea level rise was for their region. They pleaded for tree planting along the beach to capture CO2 from the atmosphere and contribute to reducing the negative effects. Teachers and volunteers applauded their sense of engagement.

The day's programme was concluded with sharing some bread, mineral water and other refreshments, which the kids appreciated very much. A final picture was taken with a hopeful message for a sustainable blue economy.

The concluding remarks were uttered by Ms. Jeauberte Djamou of the Bénévoles Océan praising the engagement of the kids, the teachers and thanking the different supporters, including Mundus maris. No earlier had she finished her closing address, the rains started as if in benediction of this beautiful event.

The teachers of the Grand Batanga schools sent a thank you letter afterwards because the pupils had greatly enjoyed the day. They also wished that the municipality and any other supporters would develop a playground and picnic area with refreshments to make the beach even more attractive to the kids and their families - and that everybody would help to prevent further pollution of the ocean and the beach.