Ocean adventures for youth

Jervis Bay Marine Park on the South Coast of NSW covers 215 square kilometres and contains over 100 kilometres of coastline. The park’s spectacular 100-meter cliffs and waterfalls provided the backdrop for the Rotary Club of Nowra’s recent youth program fundraiser.

Sightseeing, snorkelling and scuba diving tours around the bay were organised and led by Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) graduate and RYLA Oceania candidate Chloe White. As a professional scuba instructor, leading these tours is nothing new to Chloe. She has shown many people the environmental wonders the bay has to offer, and has been the driver and organiser of many women’s dive days and events at Jervis Bay.

The morning kicked off with a snorkel and sightseeing tour to the northern seal colony, located at a small group of islands known as Drum and Drumsticks. On route, the boat stopped under a waterfall to refresh the team. Once refreshed by the cold, crystal clear water, they pushed on to where the seals greeted the boat, however, due to sea conditions, snorkelling with the playful creatures was not possible.

The group then retreated to the calm waters of the bay, where they snorkelled sea caves in The Docks sanctuary zone. Back at the wharf, the divers and snorkellers were entertained by a Little Blue (Fairy) Penguin darting around the boat in shallow water. The divers then headed south to Steamers Head sanctuary zone, where they were blessed with great visibility, and encountered more than 50 grey nurse sharks and seals. One diver described it as a “mind blowing” experience.

The day ended with a night dive at The Docks sanctuary zone, with all the normal night critters showing up to delight the crowd.

Some money raised through the tour will help Chloe complete her enrolment in the RYLA Oceania- Elevate program, a 12-month course for Australian, New Zealand and Pacific Islander RYLA alumni to further their leadership journey.

For more information on the tours, contact Bruce Whiley on 0427 655 173 or b@whiley.net.au