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Commercial reef tourism operators to benefit from Reef Education Program

Commercial reef tourism operators to benefit from Reef Education Program
June 2, 2021

Commercial reef tourism operators have the chance to join the Great Barrier Reef Education Experience Program launched by the Queensland Government which is a three-year program providing up to $150 per student, paid directly to schools, toward the cost of a school excursion which includes a reef experience.

To be eligible for the program, commercial reef tourism operators must have a COVIDSafe plan in place, a Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority permit to operate in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, and appropriate Blue Cards. Queensland Assistant Tourism Minister and Member for Cairns Michael Healy advises that commercial tourism operators who meet eligibility criteria should submit an expression of interest by 5pm on Monday 7th June.

Queensland Tourism Minister Stirling Hinchliffe notes “we want to offer a quality experience to school students, so operators will need to be recognised as a High Standard Tourism Operator by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority or a Best of Queensland Experience by Tourism and Events Queensland.”

Minister Healy added “for some 6,500 Queensland students, the Great Barrier Reef Education Experience Program will turn the reef into the state’s biggest classroom and increase bookings for local reef tour business.

“There’s no better way to learn about the about the biology and protection of the reef than snorkelling the reef, sea kayaking or taking in a glass bottom boat experience with a Queensland tourism operator.

“The Reef Education Program will deliver a boost for the reef tour industry and accommodation providers.

“It’s an initiative that works on many levels from stronger community understanding of the reef to inspiring a new generation of Queensland students to aim for careers in reef sciences.”

Minister Hinchliffe advised “we expect thousands of Queensland primary and secondary students will get to explore the reef from Far North Queensland to the southern reef.

“The three-year program provides up to $150 per student, paid directly to schools, toward the cost of a school excursion which includes a reef experience.

“We know there is enormous interest in this program among commercial reef tourism operators.”

Applications will open soon for Queensland primary and secondary school excursions from the start of term three this year and will run for three-years, or until funding is exhausted.

For further information including how to submit an expression of interest, click here.

Related Articles

19th May 2021 - Australian Marine Conservation Society claims Hunter Valley gas development to be a disaster for the Reef

9th May 2021 - Great Barrier Reef protection to be enhanced with new $9.7 million vessel

28th April 2021 - Queensland Government rejects mine to protect Reef

17th March 2021 - Queensland Government extends fee relief for Cairns reef operators

22nd February 2021 - 17 marine tourism operators funded to monitor health of Great Barrier Reef

17th February 2021 - Taronga Zoo scientists playing key role in protecting Great Barrier Reef

17th February 2021 - Great Barrier Reef’s D Grade highlights urgent action is required

11th January 2021 - Tablelands Regional Council signs up as reef guardian

4th December 2020 - Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority elects Jeff Baines as inaugural Chair of Reef Guardian Council

27th November 2020 - New management arrangements proposed for Townsville’s John Brewer Reef

30th October 2020 - Cairns Regional Council endorses plan for Reef management

15th October 2020 - Cairns Regional Council recommends improvements to Great Barrier Reef plan

9th October 2020 - Australian Marine Conservation Society claims Reef Inquiry confirms what was already known

8th October 2020 - Census launched to help inform Great Barrier Reef key management decisions

30th September 2020 - Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority responds to illegal fishing on the Reef

14th September 2020 - Gladstone Regional Council renews its commitment to guarding the Great Barrier Reef

8th September 2020 - Australian Marine Conservation Society welcomes Federal Government intervention into protecting Great Barrier Reef wildlife

21st August 2020 - Whitsunday Council recommits to Reef Guardian Council program

31st July 2020 - Australian tour operator Fun Over Fifty assists in reef restoration

16th June 2020 - Great Barrier Reef campaigners deliver message of Reef-safe recovery

25th May 2020 - Australian Marine Conservation Society would welcome additional support for reef tourism sector

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