The WWF Duke of Edinburgh Conservation Award is WWF’s premier award. The purpose of the award is to recognise, once a year, highly meritorious contributions to the conservation of wildlife and natural resources.
Blue Ventures founder Dr Alasdair Harris was a 2015 recipient, alongside Mr Alifereti Tawake, for their significant contributions to marine conservation. This award highlights the extraordinary effort the winners are taking to support local communities in rebuilding fish populations and restore marine habitat, like coral reefs, through community-based conservation.
Winner of the Outstanding Volunteer Project award
The Global Youth Travel Awards celebrate the outstanding performers within the youth, student and educational travel industry and act as a benchmark for excellence within this fast-growing sector. The Outstanding Volunteer Project award looks to recognise and showcase volunteer projects/programmes that stand out through an emphasis on sustainability, responsibility and best practices.
Winner of the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship
The Skoll Award recognises social entrepreneurs whose innovations have already had significant, proven impact on some of the world’s most pressing problems, and invests directly in the promise of even greater impact at scale. By investing in organisations when an innovation is ripe for accelerated and scaled adoption, the Skoll Awards help unleash the full global potential and reach of social entrepreneurs.
Lionfish dive trip named as one of National Geographic’s 50 Tours of a Lifetime
Our lionfish dive trip offers volunteers the opportunity to improve their scuba diving skills and learn about the marine environment, while surveying and hunting invasive lionfish that threaten Belize’s coral reefs and traditional fisheries. This accolade from National Geographic is reserved for the most authentic, innovative, immersive and sustainable tours on the planet.
Finalist in the “Best Volunteering Organisation” category.
The awards, organised by the British Educational Travel Association (BETA), celebrate the work and success of organisations engaged in youth, student and educational travel. We’re delighted to announce that BV was awarded silver in the Best Volunteering Organisation category at the #BYTA2014 awards. We are very pleased to have our marine conservation expeditions recognised by this industry-leading award!
Winner of the St Andrews Prize for the Environment
The St Andrews Prize for the Environment recognises practical solutions to environmental challenges that are developed and implemented by multidisciplinary teams or community groups. The purpose of the prize is to identify and reward entrepreneurs with original and practical ideas for coping with specific environmental problems. Such ideas must be designed to lead to action and be easy to replicate elsewhere, taking account of their social and economic implications. The judging panel selected Blue Ventures’ holistic Population-Health-Environment (PHE) approach for the prize in 2014 following two days of presentations and intense discussions in St Andrews.
Winner in the Excellence in Leadership for Family Planning (EXCELL) awards
The inaugural Excellence in Leadership for Family Planning (EXCELL) awards were announced at the International Conference on Family Planning (ICFP) held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in November 2013. They recognise major breakthroughs in the areas of family planning demand generation, service provision, research and advocacy. They celebrate progress that is being made by governments, organisations and individuals to increase access to voluntary family planning information and services in line with the rights-based principles of FP2020. The selection committee, convened by the Bill & Melinda Gates Institute for Population and Reproductive Health, judged nominations on the basis of their proven impact and potential reach. Blue Ventures was one of just two organisations to receive an EXCELL award at this global event, with the selection committee praising its holistic Population-Health-Environment (PHE) approach.
Highly Commended in the Tusk Award for Conservation
The Tusk Awards, established in partnership with Investec Asset Management, recognise and highlight the work of dedicated conservationists across Africa. Dr Alasdair Harris received a Highly Commended prize in the inaugural year of this award from HRH The Duke of Cambridge for his work with communities along the Madagascar coast, as founder and executive director of Blue Ventures Conservation. Harris’s initiatives protect marine biodiversity and safeguard traditional coastal livelihoods, creating a thriving new marine conservation movement in the region.
Winner in the “Best Volunteering Organisation” category.
The awards, organised by the British Educational Travel Association (BETA), celebrate the work and success of organisations engaged in youth, student and educational travel
Finalist in Ecosystem Conservation Category
The Katerva Awards are the pinnacle of global sustainability recognition. They identify, refine and accelerate the best ideas on the planet toward impact at a global level.
“If the Nobel Society had an award for sustainability, it would resemble the Katerva Awards, a new international prize for the most promising ideas and efforts to advance the planet toward sustainability.”
“For developing a comprehensive, integrated, solution that has significant potential to solve one of humanity’s most pressing problems.”
In 2011, Blue Ventures was selected from 165 entries as winners of the prestigious Buckminster Fuller Challenge for its work to protect marine resources and improve the livelihoods of coastal communities in Madagascar. The Buckminster Fuller Institute is dedicated to accelerating the development of solutions which radically advance human well-being and the health of our planet’s ecosystems. BFI recognised Blue Ventures for its unique holistic approach – combining scientific research, the development of sustainable aquaculture, family planning support, environmental education, and the creation of community-led protected areas – to bring direct benefits to both people and nature.
Finalist in the “Green Tourism” category.
The awards, organised by the British Educational Travel Association (BETA), celebrate the work and success of organisations engaged in youth, student and educational travel. The Green Tourism award is for youth travel organisations working to maximise their positive impact on the environment and local community.
The Responsible Tourism Awards are the most competitive and prestigious awards of their kind in the world and are a collaboration between responsibletravel.com, who founded and organise the awards, UK media partners Metro Newspaper and Geographical Magazine, and World Travel Market, who host the Awards ceremony.
Blue Ventures was commended for creating the Indian Ocean’s first replicable blueprint for community-centred marine and coastal conservation planning.
Working alongside some of the world’s poorest coastal communities, and drawing on international resources, Blue Ventures has created a model for community members to actively implement, manage and monitor marine conservation strategies.
Blue Ventures was selected as one of 12 finalists, winning a joint prize from StepUp Travel, MatadorU, Xola Consulting and the Adventure Travel Trade Association.
Places on the Edge: Saving Coastal and Freshwater Destinations, was a competition to identify innovative solutions allowing coastal destinations to protect the environment and strengthen the heritage and livelihoods of local residents.
You can read more about our entry on the changemakers website >
Blue Ventures’ Research Director Alasdair Harris was selected as winner of the 2010 Young Conservationist Award, an award by the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas and the International Ranger Federation which honours outstanding achievements by young people in the world’s protected areas.
Al, a founding Director of Blue Ventures, has spent a decade promoting the cause of marine conservation and research in the western Indian Ocean. His work has focused on developing new models for the sustainable financing of marine conservation in the region. Conservation initiatives piloted by Blue Ventures have won international acclaim for their contribution to biodiversity conservation and poverty alleviation.
Highly commended in the “Best in a Marine Environment” category.
The Responsible Tourism Awards are the most competitive and prestigious awards of their kind in the world and are a collaboration between responsibletravel.com, who founded and organise the Awards, UK media partners The Daily Telegraph and Geographical Magazine, and World Travel Market, who host the Awards ceremony.
Al Harris named one of the Future 100 Young Social Entrepreneurs, 2009
The Future 100 Awards recognises young entrepreneurs demonstrating flair and innovation in running a responsible business venture – one which demonstrates a balance between economic, environmental and social goals.
For two decades, Condé Nast Traveler has been honouring environmental visionaries around the world who have found innovative solutions to seemingly intractable problems. Each year, Condé Nast receives hundreds of nominations and, with the help of a panel of expert judges, selects one winner and three runners-up.
In 2009, Blue Ventures’ work in Madagascar won international acclaim for its progress in demonstrating the sustainable economic benefits of responsible marine stewardship. Madagascar is widely regarded as the world’s most critical conservation priority, yet the island continent faces massive environmental problems linked to climate change, population growth and over-exploitation of natural resources.
Highly commended in the “Best Volunteering Organisation” category.
The Responsible Tourism Awards are sponsored by responsibletravel.com, Virgin Holidays, The Daily Telegraph, Geographical Magazine and BBC World News, and the World Travel Market. The awards are the most competitive and prestigious awards of their kind in the world.
The awards recognise tourism ventures that make a positive contribution to conservation and the economies of local communities while minimising any negative impacts of tourism.
More than 1,900 tour operators from across the globe were nominated for the awards.
Blue Ventures was selected as one of 14 finalists from 516 nominations, from 89 countries.
The goal of the Geotourism Challenge is to identify and showcase innovators – individuals and organisations that support the approach known as geotourism: tourism that sustains or enhances the geographical character of a place, its environment, culture, aesthetics, heritage, and the well-being of its residents.
You can read more about our entry at http://www.changemakers.com/competition/geotourism2008/entries/using-tourism-conservation-tool-protect-people-and
The Responsible Tourism Awards are sponsored by responsibletravel.com, Virgin Holidays, The Times, the World Travel Market and Geographical magazine. The awards recognise tourism ventures that make a positive contribution to conservation and the economies of local communities while minimising any negative impacts of tourism.
More than 1,700 tour operators from across the globe were nominated for the awards.
Blue Ventures’ partnership with the village of Andavadoaka won the UNDP Equator Prize in recognition of outstanding community efforts for poverty reduction and biodiversity conservation.
Blue Ventures worked with Andavadoaka in 2004 to establish the world’s first community-run octopus no-take zone. The strategy, which created seasonal closures, not only ensures the long-term survival of octopus populations, but also results in greater yields for fishermen when the closures are opened each season.
The First Choice Responsible Tourism Awards are sponsored by responsibletravel.com, The Times and Geographical Magazine.
The awards are the largest of their kind and recognise tourism organisations that respect and benefit local people and places. Blue Ventures was chosen from among 1,200 nominations.
Winner of the “General Countryside” category from Skal, the world’s largest organisation of travel and tourism professionals.
Enterprising Young Brits Awards, 2005 and 2006
Blue Ventures was highly commended for two consecutive years by then UK Chancellor, Gordon Brown, in the ‘social and environment’ category of this national enterprise competition.
Chancellor Gordon Brown said; ‘All of the finalists are winners – they are creating new opportunities and advancing new ideas to create an enterprising society. Do not underestimate the power you have to encourage others – you are making your mark by showing that enterprise is changing the face of Britain.’
Blue Ventures won this prestigious award along with our community partners in recognition of innovative, locally-driven partnerships delivering sustainable development and livelihoods. Winners were selected from over 260 entries from 66 countries, representing 1,200 organisations.
Blue Ventures’ partnership project ‘Madagascar’s first community-run, experimental Marine Protected Area’ was chosen as a ‘shining example of how economic development and environmental protection can go hand in hand,’ according to the international panel which made the selection.
The awards recognise companies and organisations in the travel industry that are making a significant commitment to ‘responsible’ tourism – that is, projects which make a positive contribution to conservation and the economies of local communities, while minimizing the negative impacts that tourism can have.