The 1st Cohort of the Black Sea Young Ambassadors conducted various awareness-raising campaigns and outreach activities in their communities. In Romania, Selma Menabit organized workshops and beach activities to raise awareness about Black Sea issues among high school students. In Georgia, Salome Kobaidze organized events to educate and sensitize Georgian youth about the sustainable development of the Black Sea, including workshops, meetings, and a beach cleaning event. Elena Culighin led a campaign in Moldova called “Love Your Rivers to Protect the Black Sea,” which involved field trips and a social media campaign to address river pollution. Gizem Akkus conducted interviews with marine professionals in Türkiye to highlight their work and assess stressors in the Black Sea. Additionally, a basin-wide photo contest was organized by Oana Poana from Romania to capture different perspectives of the coastal and marine environment of the Black Sea.
Furthermore, some of the Black Sea Young Ambassadors participated in the Black Sea CONNECT Marine Litter Action Forum, where they presented their collective efforts to address the issue of plastic pollution. They emphasized the importance of staying connected and working together to raise awareness about this pressing environmental problem.
As a part of the European Research and Innovation Days, Oana Poiana came together with different sea basins’ young ambassadors in the Youth for a Healthy Ocean session. They discussed the impact of science on regional cooperation, the role of young researchers in ocean conservation, and how to contribute to the health of our oceans.
Selma Menabit from the first cohort and Bükem Belen from the second cohort attended the Mission Ocean Conference of the European Commission. They made their pledges to connect the Black Sea to all European Seas in the light of the Mission Ocean and joined their fellow ambassadors in lighting the torch, symbolizing their dedication to this goal.
As the first cohort of Black Sea Young Ambassadors sets an inspiring example, it is evident that their collective efforts have laid the foundation for a bright and promising future for the Black Sea. Their passion, dedication, and innovative approaches demonstrate the role of youth in the protection of our seas and oceans.