Hands-on Marine Science Activities of the BRIDGE-BS

Under the EU H2020-funded BRIDGE-BS, 11 hands-on marine science activities in total including workshops, training courses, and laboratory experiments have been conducted by BRIDGE-BS partners TUDAV, IO-BAS, TSU, and GeoEcoMar. Similar activities will continue for the coming year.

TUDAV

Planned activities

  • Dolphin and Bird watching cruises will be conducted as the main activity for school children between 3rd – 8th grade. The aim is to provide the school children with a chance to experience observation of the Black Sea biodiversity, specifically dolphins and sea birds, and to think about how to protect them from the current threats, such as pollution and bycatch. It is planned to organize up to 5 cruises, depending on the budget and funds. Potential sponsors will be contacted and asked for in-kind support.  Booklets about the Istanbul Strait will be printed and distributed during the cruise. Interactive learning sessions will be organized during the cruise.
  • Raising awareness of marine biodiversity and conservation using Instagram Reel was decided as the national competition. Participants will make videos of 30 seconds and will be evaluated by the public “likes” and Jury votes to decide on the winner. The prize will be determined accordingly.

IO-BAS

  • Marine Science & Blue Growth” training course of students from the IV Language High School “Frédéric Joliot-Curie” at the IO-BAS with 18 students (10th grade). The training course covered practical education on Black Sea biodiversity – importance, assessment methods, and modern methods of research. The students had the opportunity to work in the following laboratories: “Marine Chemistry”, “Marine Biology and Ecology”, and “Molecular taxonomy and Ecology”.
  • “Marine Science & Blue Growth” training course of students from the First Language School – Varna at the IO-BAS with 22 students (9th grade). The training course covered lectures on innovative approaches for studying the Black Sea: “Physico-chemical and chemical monitoring of the Bulgarian Black Sea coastal waters”, “Molecular taxonomy – new insight into potentially toxic phytoplankton species in the Black Sea”, and “Innovative approaches for assessing species diversity and populations of economically valuable fish species”.
  • “Marine Science & Blue Growth” training course of students from The High School of Mathematics “Dr. Petar Beron” – Varna at the IO-BAS with 12 students (10th grade). The training course covered lectures and laboratory exercises on “Microplastic pollution in the Bulgarian part of the Black Sea – sediments, biota, surface water”.
  • Marine Science & Blue Growth” training course of students from three primary schools from Varna and Plovdiv at the IO-BAS with 10 students (5-7th grade). The training course covered lectures on “Physico-chemical and biological monitoring of the Bulgarian Black Sea coastal waters with a special focus on Black Sea biodiversity and marine litter”.

  • “Marine Science & Blue Growth” training course for students from The Private Vocational high school for engineering, technology, and computer science – Varna at the IO-BAS with 9 students (10th grade). The training course covered practical education on Black Sea biodiversity – importance, assessment methods, and modern methods of research. The students had the opportunity to work in the following laboratories: “Marine Chemistry”, “Marine Biology and Ecology”, and “Molecular taxonomy and Ecology”.

Planned activities

  • Continuing with more campaigns with students, including fieldwork with high school students for marine litter near the beach and another visit to the laboratories.
  • “The Black Sea and its inhabitants” drawing competition for primary school children
  • “Keep the Back Sea clean” art – photo competition for secondary school children.

TSU

  • The event, Black Sea Blue Policy, was held at Batumi Shota Rustaveli University, on the initiative and organization of the Ministry of Education and Science of Georgia and the Ministry of Education and Science of Ajara. The current scientific research projects related to the Black Sea such as EU/UNDP Project Emblas, EMBLAS Plus, EU4 RAMBLAS, including the BRIDGE-BS project, were introduced by TSU.

    The Black Sea Blue Policy, attended by a diverse audience (including government, academia, higher education institutions, non-governmental organizations, and schools), aimed to raise public awareness of Black Sea issues, promote scientific research and innovation, and introduce researchers’ achievements to the general public.

    In parallel with the informative presentations, the representatives of the university conducted a scientific quiz and contest of thematic paintings related to the Black Sea. 10 students participated in the drawing competition and all the participants were given gifts made within the framework of the project (T-shirts (100), bags (100), TENE cables (50), and brochures (1000)).

  • The Workshop, Save Your Black Sea, was held with “young rangers” in Georgia and was attended by 15 local public school students, teachers, and the representatives of the Kolkheti National Park (accompanied by the head of the administration and the rangers of the park). The workshop was carried out interactively and featured informative and experience-sharing practices and competition-based tasks. It was completed with a special event of cleaning a beach in Maltakva, near Poti.
  • The Meeting, Blue economy in the Black Sea, was held with 24 students from TSU in Kobuleti. The students were presented with the research and its preliminary consequences on the Blue Economy Development in Georgia. The aim was to facilitate a better understanding of the Black Sea. The attendees also had the opportunity to learn information from several relevant scientific videos about the Black Sea stressors and current issues.

GeoEcoMar

  • An outreach activity was organized by INCD GeoEcoMar and INCDM Grigore Antipa, dedicated to secondary school children from Nr.3 “Ciprian Porumbescu” School Constanta (20 participants) at Modern beach (Constanta). An interactive methodology was used with the identification guide (flyers) for seashells. With the “explore by yourself” method, the event aimed to improve children’s knowledge of native and invasive alien species populating the Black Sea, also highlighting their ecological role.
  • A drawing exhibition has been carried out for the occasion of the “International Black Sea Action Day” at School No. 3 Ciprian Porumbescu. All the participants have been given felicitations for their time and effort.
  • Second activity on the identification of native and invasive mollusk species living in the Black Sea took place on the Modern beach in Constața an educational activity with the pupils of School no. 3 Ciprian Porumbescu. There were over 70 children from the 5th grade. The same identification guide from the first activity (21 October) has been utilized.

Planned activities

  • Awareness-raising activities within the “School Differently” Educational Programme implemented in the Romanian schools which will consist of visits to R/V “Mare Nigrum” Geoecomar research vessel in the Constanta Harbour. For this event, secondary school students from Nr.3 “Ciprian Porumbescu” School and students from high schools will be involved.