757. Anne Paranjoti
Anne Paranjoti (right), from Anglesey, is founder and Trustee of the Reef-World Foundation, an organisation that educates tourists and community members about how to conserve tropical coastlines.
Since 2011, the Reef-World Foundation has been the international coordinator of the Green Fins project. Green Fins is a United Nations initiative designed to protect and conserve coral reefs, by implementing new guidelines to promote a sustainable diving and snorkelling tourism industry. The Reef-World Foundation has trained thousands of stakeholders, from government officials to diving instructors, and has changed the fate of some of the world’s most beautiful and vulnerable coasts and coral reefs. The Foundation earned acclaim from the United Nations, who noted that Reef-World staff are “the engines behind Green Fins”.
In a personal letter to Anne, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“Through the Reef-World Foundation you are changing the fate of some of the world’s most beautiful coasts and coral reefs. In particular, the Foundation’s acclaimed work with the United Nations Green Fins initiative is playing a pivotal role in training thousands of people to protect coral reefs and promote the sustainable diving and snorkelling industry.”
“Reef-World was launched as a charity in 1999 with donations from Leonardo DiCaprio and Andrew MacDonald when they were filming The Beach in Thailand. Today, the charity works with local communities at home and abroad encouraging conservation of our coasts and reefs and I’m delighted to accept this award on behalf of all the staff and the wonderful volunteers that get involved and make a difference.
“Reef-World are the international coordinators of United Nations Environment’s Green Fins programme, and has worked with local communities and tourism companies to transform conservation activity on reefs, making it more likely they will survive for future generations.”