Project Alfreds Turtles
Everywhere sea turtles are threatened because of the lack of safe places to lay eggs, illegal poaching and plastic pollution. Humans are the most dangerous foe they have met in their 150 million years of existence. The turtles life depend on the same beautiful beaches that we love to swim and live by. They can't tell the difference between a jellyfish and a plastic bag and thus they choke to death. At the same time, people see the sea turtles and their eggs as a welcome feast.
One of the places where sea turtles are now fighting a battle for survival is Ghana. And it was a trip to a beautiful beach in Ghana with my son Alfred that set in motion my plan to make a difference for these incredible animals on this particular beach.
The project must, of course, be called "Alfred's Turtles", because it is about giving him and all other children an opportunity to experience sea turtles, even as they grow up. And then it is about showing the youngest that it is possible to make a positive difference in life.
Who we are
In addition to myself, my son Alfred and my daughter Ingrid the project is in collaboration with Scorpion Hill Lodge, which has generously laid land for the upcoming sea turtle nesting site. In addition, the local fishermen are involved, because without them we get nowhere. By 2020, we hope to be able to build a new nesting beach for sea turtles and hire local rangers to look after both young and adult turtles.
Scorpion Hill Lodge is run by Mike Abus and is owned by Hans Jørgen Pedersen - and without them there was no project.
About the project
In 2019, my family and I were in Ghana - we lived on the most beautiful beach, Busua Beach, and every day we hoped for sea turtles.
Two days before returning home, a poor local fisherman came up with a small turtle and we it free and put it out into the sea. On the way out to the waves, we (almost literally) fell over a giant trapped leatherback turtle. Of course, we also set that one free. The same day, my son Alfred and I decided we had to do something: Ghana's turtles should not end up in the soup pot - they should swim in the sea and lay eggs on the beaches. And they have to give back value to the poor local fishermen. The locals know that sea turtles are protected, but sometimes they end up in nets anyway... and the fishing is very poor in this modern world.
This is how Project Alfred's turtles came into being, helping the sea turtles, but at the same time directly rewarding the locals who help us.
By 2020, we hope to be able to build a new hatchery for sea turtles and hire local rangers to look after both young and adult turtles - an estimated cost of 30-50,000 kroner
All funds raised will go towards creating and operating the project. Should the unexpected and tedious happen that we do not get enough funds to start the project properly, the money is still given to the sea turtles. Namely via donation to the sea turtle project www.archelon.gr - which is the project where I for years personally fought for the future of the sea turtles :-)
In 2021, we would like to expand the project with an effort to clear the beach for plastic bags.
In 2022, we hope to expand the project to more beaches in Ghana and build a sea turtle rehabilitation center