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A tourist visiting Palau made a $100 donation to the Palau International Coral Reef Center (PICRC) that all started with a conversation with a local taxi driver as he was driven from the airport. After being encouraged by his taxi driver, Mr. William S. Lovejoy visited the Palau Aquarium. He was so moved by Palau’s proactive efforts in protecting its marine resources that he decided to make a contribution to the Center.
Mr. William S. Lovejoy is a professor from University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA. Upon his arrival, Mr. Lovejoy’s taxi driver from the airport had spoken proudly about the Palau Marine Sanctuary and other conservation efforts and told him not to miss out on the opportunity to visit the Palau Aquarium. Mr. Lovejoy’s observation of the Center’s research programs, outreach programs to the community, especially to Palau’s students, and long term coral reef monitoring efforts to help in conservation management was particularly significant to him.
When asked to share his reason for his donation to the Center, Mr. Lovejoy responds, “as an avid snorkeler and a lover of coral reef ecosystems, I have thoroughly enjoyed my stay in Palau and I am also very impressed with the steps Palau had taken to preserve its natural beauty for future generations. I heard about your efforts educating the public and helping to conserve and protect Palau’s wonderful marine resources from Mr. Tutii Chilton, and I would like to make a $100 contribution to the Palau International Coral Reef Center”.
Development Director, Ilebrang Olkeriil expresses, “PICRC is touched by the donation made by Lovejoy. All donations to the Center will go a long way in supporting the Center’s programs. With the Center’s 15th Anniversary around the corner, PICRC would like to encourage all locals and those visiting Palau to support the Center by visiting the Palau Aquarium, and making donations such as cash or bi-weekly allotments. A recommendation made by a taxi driver to visit the aquarium combined with local educator’s inspirational work led to a donation from a visitor to Palau”.
December 14, 2015