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Following on from our last blog, we’ve had a very busy summer.  With Rhonda now back in the water and Shaun back from Cyprus, we have more options for Open Water training.

One of the problems that many dive centres face is the voluntary nature of the staff.  Over the years we have had many staff, from Rescue Divers to Instructors, who give up their time to teach a variety of courses.  The vast majority have full time jobs and do this on their own time.  Without the help of these people we would not be able to maintain the level of training we offer.

With the new School term, Gary has already visited three schools to continue the Satellite Club initiative.  Over the years we have worked with many schools, providing after school clubs.  This is something that is one of the core values of Orca Scuba Diving Academy; working with Young People and their families.

Although you cannot start Scuba diving until you are 8 (Bubblemaker, Seal Team), we have worked all the way through Primary School, from Reception onwards, talking about the Oceans, what to see, what we can do to save them.  As one of the few PADI Approved Youth Training Centres, we hope to expand our work with schools.  Following along these lines, we have also had a great year working with The Scouts, culminating with Gilwell 24, where we worked all through the night at Chingford Leisure Centre, completing over 450 Discover Scuba Diving sessions.  Again, a huge Thank You to all the staff that helped out.  We’ve also had two visits from 291 (Westminster & Chelsea) Squadron Air Training Corps.  We look forward to expanding our work with Air Training Corps.

Over the next 2 weeks we have leaders from the Essex Boys and Girls Clubs coming in to participate in Discover Scuba Diving sessions, before bringing their respective clubs in.

We have already started planning next years’ dive trips.  There are 2 spaces left on the trip to Malapascua, Philippines in March 2019, to dive with Thresher sharks.  The in August, we are back to the Red Sea, going to Fury Shoals and St Johns reef systems on a Liveaboard.  As for the UK, we will start down in Porthkerris at the end of May (25th – 27th May) and then Swanage in August (17th – 18th August).