Did you know that turtles lift each other up? In a nest, the strongest hatchlings are on the bottom. With their eyes still closed, with no idea what sunshine is, they will push their brothers and sisters above so they can break through the sand and start their journey in life.
They will then make the climb themselves, sometimes days after everyone else is out, and brave the unknown that lies ahead in solitude. There is so much that we can learn from turtles. And from all of you, too, who have supported their comeback since December last year.
In behalf of the community and the volunteers, thank you very much for supporting the turtles!
It is hard to explain what it is like to release hatchlings. They are so tiny and fragile and the ocean so big and foreboding. Will they make it? Are they strong enough? How long will they last?
Countless times, I have watched these babies make their way into the water, their little flippers making these distinguished marks on the sand, and on my heart, too. All I can do is whisper a prayer every time and tell these turtles that I believe in them and deeply hope to see them again when they are grown and I am much older. If they focus on surviving, I will gladly wait 30 years until they come back again.
Life will be rough for these turtles. Only 1% will reach maturity. Still, each of these babies is a symbol of hope and courage, a small light that reminds us of what the ocean gives us and our responsibility to this Earth, and a kind reminder of what we are all capable of when we are able to look past our noses.
We honestly did not expect anything when we reached out to you regarding this grassroots community project but you responded with so much love and kindness and generosity that moved heaven and Earth, not just for the turtles, but for the community that took it upon itself to look after them.
To all our friends from 11 countries across the globe who adopted turtle nests, bought merch, and donated to the volunteers, we cannot thank you enough. You may be far from us physically but you are a part of our community. You shared our joys and sorrows and these turtles are every bit yours as much as they are ours.
This season has ended with the last nest hatching over a week ago, the final 62 hatchlings released into the ocean at sunset the same day. The hatchery is now empty. The coast is quiet. There are no more eggs or breeders.
Until September this year when the pawikan breeding season starts all over again!
As long as you believe in us, we will keep going. Save, empower, include. This is the plan. The turtles are doing their part. How can we not do ours? Thank you for all your support. Please come and see the turtles when the world allows!