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Under the Sea

(L-R) DoE Sustainable Development Research Officer Leah Grant, Director of the Department of Environment (DoE) Gina Ebanks-Petrie, Junior winner Aleksei Morris Seymour, and Cayman Airways' Public Relations Manager Olivia Ramirez.

Student winners of the Marine Parks 25th Anniversary poster competition recently received their prizes from Department of Environment (DoE) officials.

Senior division winner Anastasaio Hebbert earned an Olympus digital camera from Cathy Church's Photo Centre, while junior category winner Aleksei Seymour received two tickets to any Cayman Airways (CAL) destination.

Winners also walked away with DoE gift bags containing Marine Parks 25th Anniversary t-shirts, brochures, colouring books, crayons and stickers.

Junior category winner Aleksei Seymour's entry

The other senior winners were Thomas Lee Jackson, Mariah Freeman, Jordan Grant and Romario Ysaguirrie. In the younger category, Makeda Harris, Nicola Galvin, Matteo Lazzari and Aniela McGarth were also awarded prizes.

As part of the silver anniversary celebrations, students designed posters depicting the theme Marine Parks: Save Our Tomorrow -Today. All posters were displayed during the DoE's recent open house.

Departmental Director, Gina Ebanks-Petrie said that prizes were designed to stimulate the students' appreciation for the environment. They included gifts and gift certificates from Atlantis Submarine, Cayman Islands Helicopters, Yamaha/ Automotive Art, Cayman Sea Elements and Guy Harvey's.

"The 50-plus entries were outstanding, and we also had great support from the sponsors who provided wonderful prizes" said Mrs. Ebanks-Petrie.

She added, "It's vital that young people maintain an awareness of our natural environment, which is critical to the continued success of our Marine Parks and reefs. Millions of visitors view these priceless natural resources, and our coastal ecosystems and abundant marine life are vital to our economy - as well as to our quality of life."

The Cayman Islands Government passed the Marine Parks Law in 1986, even before there was widespread international recognition of the ecological and economic importance of protecting marine life.

Poster winners from Cayman Brac's Layman Scott High School will be presented with their prizes at the beginning of the school year.