Location: Puerto Morelos, Mexico
Duration: 4-12weeks commitment
Start Dates: Weekly project starts on a Saturday.
Price: from £4,295 for 4 week. Check the Prices tab for further information.
- Includes: All food, accommodation, airport pickup, pre-departure orientation & training, University of Richmond leadership & careers online courses, and all project related activities
- Does not include: Flights, travel insurance, visas and vaccinations
- Gain experience in a range of marine conservation initiatives, including coral reef surveying and restoration.
- Earn your PADI Advanced Open Water Diver certification.
- Complete GVI & PADI’s unique qualification, the PADI Coral Reef Restoration Diver (CRRD) Distinctive Speciality.
- Preserve the unique ecosystem of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef.
- Contribute to UN SDG #14, Life Below Water.
- Learn to dive in the tropical waters of the Caribbean sea.
- Make new friends when you work with a group of like-minded individuals from around the world.
- Immerse yourself in Mexican culture, learning the language and sampling authentic Mexican cuisine.
Join an international team located on Mexico’s Caribbean coast to gain experience in marine conservation and start your career in the field. The team here work with local authorities to protect the unique habitat of the Marine Biosphere Reserve of the Mexican Caribbean home to unique habitats such as coral reefs, seagrass meadows, mangrove forests, and Mexico’s famously magical cenotes.
Your internship will start with you mastering the diving and underwater survey techniques needed to conduct coral reef surveys which are accurate and don’t harm the reef. Our experienced instructors will support you all the way while you work toward earning your PADI Advanced Open Water Diver certificate. Receive the PADI Coral Reef Restoration Diver (CRRD) Distinctive Speciality segment of the PADI Divemaster course. This unique offering by GVI & PADI teaches you about best practices when conducting underwater coral reef surveys. This is offered to participants staying for longer than 2 weeks on the program.
Once your training is complete you will work with other participants to help monitor assigned sections of the reef. Depending on the duration of your stay you will learn about how to identify fish, coral, and other marine life as well as how this data is used by local authorities to make decisions about conservation. You will also assist our local partners with their ongoing coral restoration project by either growing coral fragments in a laboratory or transplanting these coral fragments onto the reef.
You will also participate in a range of other initiatives designed to work toward achieving the objectives of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal #14, Life Below Water. Some of these include ocean floor and beach cleanups and the subsequent recording of the plastic collected for later data analysis, sea turtle monitoring, environmental awareness workshops with local students, community groups, businesses and tourists. Please note that these activities don´t run all year long as they are locally driven and it depends on the needs of our local partner’s.
Throughout the internship, you will learn about the importance of engaging local communities to ensure that marine conservation initiatives have long-lasting positive results. Reflecting this reality, you will not only master technical diving and marine research skills on this internship but also have the opportunity to practice your interpersonal skills.
Participants are expected to remain flexible as project work changes based on weather as well as needs of our project partners.
- 5 or 6am: Wake up call
- 6 – 10 am: First Survey
- 12pm: Lunch
- 1pm – 4pm: Second Survey
- 6pm: Dinner
- 9pm: Bed Time
Travel & Accommodation
Puerto Morelos is the oldest port city in the Mexican Caribbean, our base is located on the beachfront about 5km from the town centre.
Accommodation facilities are shared dormitories and can be considered basic.
Breakfast is prepared by participants and while lunch and dinner is prepared by a local cook. Most dietary requirements can be catered for.
By participating in this program, you are not only offered an opportunity to work toward conserving ecosystems but also the opportunity to see local sites! Our dedicated field staff are the best resource when researching local trips, they have compiled this list of activities.
- Mayan Ruins
- Eco Adventure Parks
- Diving & Snorkeling
- Whale spotting
- Hiking & rock climbing
- Minimum age 18
- Be keen and enthusiastic to get involved in the project
- Ability to work within a team environment
- Minimum 1 week commitment
- CRB Police check (or equivalent) showing that you have no previous criminal convictions
- Signed medical form
- Good English skills
- Necessary vaccinations
- Necessary flight & visas
- Full travel & medical insurance. Full assistance will be provided in getting everything you will need ready if you choose our Placement Support Package.
- 4 weeks – £4,295
- 6 weeks – £5,145
- 8 weeks – £6,095
- 10 weeks – £7,045
- 12 weeks – £7,895
- 14 weeks – £8,495
- 16 weeks – £9,445
- 18 weeks – £9,795
- 20 weeks – £10,595
- 22 weeks – £11,395
- 24 weeks – £12,295
* Check the latest currency conversions with xe.com
** All payments incur a 5% bank transfer fee
*** Placements are confirmed with a deposit.
*Discount are available to customers travelling from September 2021 onwards
Project Fee includes;
- 24-hour emergency phone
- 24-hour in-country support
- Access to Alumni Services and Discounts
- Airport pick-up (unless otherwise stated)
- All necessary project equipment and materials
- All necessary project training by experienced staff
- Certification and summary of training and experience received
- Community work workshop
- Confidential professional reference
- Coral reef ecology
- Final evaluation
- First Aid & CPR training
- Introduction to teaching techniques
- Location orientation
- Long term experienced staff
- Meals while on project (except on work placements for long term internships)
- Real hands on experience and learn about the challenges of marine conservation has in this region
- Safe and basic accommodations (usually shared)
- Teamwork and leadership experience
- Transfer to base location
- Use of O2 equipment workshop
- Weekly evaluation with your mentor
- Welcome meeting
WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED
- Additional drinks and gratuities
- Extra local excursions
- International and domestic airport taxes
- Medical and travel insurance
- Personal dive kit, e.g. mask, fins, wetsuit, timer, DSMB and reel, slate, etc.
- Personal items and toiletries
- Police or background check
- Some equipment is not included
- Visa costs (where necessary)
Full assistance will be provided in getting all these arranged if you choose our Premium Support.
Premium Support Upgrade
We understand there’s a great deal to plan and organise for your trip. When booking a Placement, many of our participants choose to purchase our Premium Support Upgrade to benefit from the expertise, knowledge and experience of our Project Coordinators.
We can provide the personal advice you need to ensure your trip is organised with excellence and planned with efficiency; ensuring the very best experience possible. Read more about how we can help you.
Note: Map coordinates are approximate