The Atlantis Program emerged as a response to the lack of relation between communities, the Ocean and the need to act urgently on Ocean protection to mitigate loss of biodiversity and natural resources. On other hand, the general public has a lack of information about the ocean's important role on biodiversity maintenance, carbon sink or oxygen production.
The Atlantis Program was an underwater ecological education program that promoted Ocean literacy from the combination of free diving with ecological education and human development. Through this method, it intended to awaken and root the environmental responsibility and discover new personal skills, either in the students or in the communities where they live and in the relationships that lay in the environment around.
The program took place between March-August 2021 and involved an 8th grade class from the local school – Sesimbra, involving 22 students and 8 teachers. During a school year several different enriching and awareness activities combining scientific, sporting, educational and human development knowledge were activated:
- Free diving, approaching young people to the Ocean and inspiring them to take action on a more sustainable lifestyle.
- Collective Dream, mentoring for a class project within the scope of ocean protection and self-development;
- Study visits to sea prairies, raising awareness on the importance and beauty of this habit;
- Ocean Talks, free public event where informal lived experiences by experts in different areas related to the sea were shared with the public;
- EcoAção, beach and seabed cleaning action with the local community.