Students from St. Mary’s College will join their peers from other schools and officials to promote the Sustainable Development Goals (S.D.G) this morning on Beach Road.
The school is among 17 schools allocated with an S.D.G to promote as part of the global celebration of the United Nations Development Programme’s 50th Anniversary.
Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi is scheduled to deliver the keynote address after the parade from the Fire Station towards the government building.
For St. Mary’s, they have been tasked with S.D.G 14 which is to “Protect all Life Underwater.”
The all girls school has taken this task seriously by teaching their students the importance of our Marine life. Faafetai Taulā, a teacher at the School, said the students have been learning about the importance of marine life.
“Marine life is very important in Samoa because the people depend on resources it provides. Many people earn money through fishing and it’s their livelihood,” Mrs. Taulā said.
“Our oceans provide the people with so much and we should keep it safe.”
For today, fifteen year 9 students have been selected to represent the college. They have prepared a skit.
“We’ll be doing a skit with our girls about a family of marine animals. It’s about a turtle and an octopus couple who do their usual chores every day,” Mrs. Taulā said. “Their children wanted to leave and the couple advised them of the dangers of the ocean but they went anyway.”
The skit will show how serious the threats to marine life are.
“The children return with four missing due to threats to marine life; the first one died due to acidification of the water, the other died due to the dangers of the dead zones, another died from overfishing and the last one died due to pollution.”
According to Mrs. Taulā, “we can reduce these issues by limiting the use of fossil fuels, use fewer plastic products because majority of the plastic wastes end up in the ocean, maintaining areas near water can reduce debris ending up in the ocean and make safe sustainable seafood choices to eliminate the risk of species extinction.”
Mrs. Taulā acknowledged U.N.D.P’s move to use the event to encourage students’ participation.
“I think it’s a very good idea that U.N.D.P has made the move to have the year 9’s be part of the march rather than the usual senior classes,” Mrs. Taulā said.
“This is the very first level in the college and the kids feel very special to be invited to take part in the march. They will also get the opportunity to learn from other schools that will showcase the S.D.G they were tasked with.”
Even after the march the school has plans to continue teaching on the importance of marine life.
“Lessons for children to further understand the importance of marine life is applicable to our school and all others in Samoa,” Mrs. Taulā said.
“The kids need to know how important the ocean is and how we need to keep it safe. The ocean will be theirs to take care of in the future and it’s good to start them early.”
Today’s programme begins at 8.30am.
It ends with a tree planting ceremony at the Vaiala seawall at 3pm.