Sunday, March 1, 2015

THA Underwater clean up at Chaweng Beach

It was time for our bi yearly THA Underwater clean up at Chaweng Beach, sponsored by the Koh Samui branch of the THA or Thai Hotel Association. We had all the whistles and bells, the THA organized a small boat and a garbage collection van with assistance of the Tessabaan or local municipality.

THA Underwater clean up at Chaweng Beach

All divers before the dive with Johan Ens, vice president of the THA Koh Samui chapter

Due to me working a lot outside of Koh Samui, I don't get to dive Chaweng beach as much as I used to do and I enjoy every opportunity I get or have. Today the visibility was good for local circumstances but sadly enough, we found heaps of trash, much more compared to some previous clean ups at the exact same location.

THA Underwater clean up at Chaweng Beach

Assorted trash underwater, including remains of fireworks

One great improvement was the small boat from the Tessabaan. Having this boat around allowed all of us to surface on a regular base and dump our filled to the rim bags into the boat or bring large pieces of trash to the surface, where the boat could collect it. A great improvement over previous clean ups, when we had to leave when our bags were full. Now we could go down again and keep collecting.

THA Underwater clean up at Chaweng Beach

Many plastic bags, like picture above, were collected

In total we filled 20 big trash bags, plus numerous other objects. We found over a hundred plastic bags in various sizes, about another hundred plastic and glass bottles, some 30 beverage cans, around 60 caps and lids, 26 pieces of clothing (ranging from shoe, flip flops to hats and t shirts), 35 cups and other assorted small plastic items like spoons, forks and knives. 38 food wrappers, a handful of pull tabs and 20 straws.

THA Underwater clean up at Chaweng Beach

The boat that helped us collect trash

Lots of plastic remains of fireworks, 17 parts of fishing nets, a light bulb, 2 plastic pallets and 22 pieces of rope, 3 crates and a dozen fishing lines, some cigarette filters and lighters, some 20 sunglasses, 10 or so goggles, 10 dive masks, 6 rice bags, a couple of plastic signs and cotton beach advertisement signs and some beach flags and buoys.
Oh yes, and a Go Pro camera in an underwater housing and one of the divers found a 1.000.-THB note!

THA Underwater clean up at Chaweng Beach

The 'collection' after the dive, 20 bags with approximately 20 kilos of trash

All in all we estimated that we found around 400 kilos of trash this morning and this was unfortunately just the tip of the iceberg! 
So we can say that unfortunately we had a successful THA Underwater clean up at Chaweng Beach!
Thanks for everybody that showed up and helped out! Much appreciated and thanks to the THA for keeping this initiative going and supporting it, Al's Resort for allowing us to have access to the beach and Khun Praesert from the 'Chaweng Calamity Centre' and Chief Engineer at poppies Resort.

Camille

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Shark Guardian presentation on Malapascua in the Philippines

Shark Guardian presentation on Malapascua in the Philippines is coming and well Thursday 5th March at the Exotic Sports Bar which can be found above Exotic Dive Center. It's free and all are welcome with the presentation beginning at 6pm.

Shark Guardian presentation on Malapascua in the Philippines

The presenter of this Shark Guardian presentation on Malapascua in the Philippines will be myself, and I will be in the function of a volunteer/presenter on behalf of Shark Guardian. 

It will be the second Shark Guardian presentation ever in the Philippines. the first one being conducted in Moalboal back in December 2014.
The presentation will be at Exotic dive center, one of only two Shark Guardian dive centers in the Philippines.

We're looking into one or more presentations later in March in Moalboal, stay tuned for more updates on Shark Guardian activities in the Philippines.

Camille

Friday, February 20, 2015

Next PADI IDC is coming up 7th March 2015 in Moalboal, Philippines

Yes indeed, the next PADI IDC is coming up 7th March 2015 in Moalboal, Philippines. Please note the change in date! There are still spaces available, so don't hesitate to contact us for this program or other programs later this year.

Next PADI IDC is coming up 7th March 2015 in Moalboal, Philippines

If these March 2015 dates don't suit you, the next IDC programs are scheduled as follow; 28th March in Khao Lak, Thailand, followed by 14th April on Koh Lanta, Thailand and 5th May and 12th June on Koh Samui, Thailand.

See you there,
Camille

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Testimonial by Raymond Greenlaw

Today I received a testimonial by Raymond Greenlaw, participant of the recent February 2015 PADI IDC in Phuket in conjunction with PADI 5* IDC Center 'Kiwidiver'.

It's great to receive this Ray, it means a lot to me and I appreciate it you taking out the time to write this from 'on the road'!

I recently completed an IDC with Camille.
What was unusual is that I was a cross-over student, and had limited to no experience with PADI. In addition, I have never worked professionally as a Dive Master. I wanted to attain the PADI Dive Instructor certification for "fun". 
Camille saw to it that I was very well prepared for the IE. I scored an average of about 90% on all of my written exams, a 4.8/5.0 on my presentation, near perfect scores on my skills circuit, 9+/10 on my
confined water presentations, and 8.6/10.0 on my open water presentations. I did a great rescue thanks to Camille's having me practice each day.
Due a death in my friend's family, our IDC was slightly more compressed than usual. Plus, I completed numerous specialty courses. Without Camille's experience and knowledge, my success
likely would not have been possible. I can highly recommend Camille, as an IDC instructor. If the opportunity arises, I would take additional specialty courses with Camille. 

Dr. Raymond "Wall" Greenlaw, PADI Dive Instructor

Testimonial by Raymond Greenlaw

Ray after a successful PADI IE with PADI Examiner Brendon Ford Sing

Check out my next PADI IDC dates, so you can become a PADI Instructor yourself. Your first option will be 7th March in Moalboal, Philippines, followed by 28th March in Khao Lak, Thailand and this is followed by 14th April in Khao Lak, Thailand.

See you there,
Camille

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

9th consecutive Platinum PADI Course Director rating for Camille

Today I received an email from PADI, confirming that I have been rewarded a 9th consecutive Platinum PADI Course Director rating for Camille. I'm just one of the 58 Platinum PADI Course Directors worldwide and one of 25 in the PADI ASia Pacific region. On top of that I'm one of a handful Platinum PADI Course Directors worldwide who have received this rating uninterrupted since it's very beginning.

 9th consecutive Platinum PADI Course Director rating for Camille

An excerpt from the PADI email;

Congratulations!  Based on your Instructor Development productivity in 2014, you’ve achieved the Platinum Course Director level for 2015. By doing so you've become one of 58 Course Directors worldwide to earn this level of recognition in the Frequent Trainer Program.

There were 25 Course Directors who qualified for Platinum status in the Asia Pacific region this year.

9th consecutive Platinum PADI Course Director rating for Camille

If you want to be taught by the best, my next PADI IDC is scheduled to start 7th March in Moalboal, Philippines, followed by 28th March in Khao Lak, Thailand and 14th April on Koh Lanta, Thailand.

See you there,
Camille

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Testimonial by Paul Goransson

Today I received this testimonial by Paul Goransson who participated in the recent PADI IDC on Phuket, Thailand for February 2015 in conjunction with PADI 5* IDC Center 'Kiwidiver'.

Thanks for taking the time to write this Paul, much appreciated;

I had decided to do the PADI IDC in Phuket Thailand some time ago. My bags were packed and I was going to leave my home in Maine for the airport in about 18 hours when my father-in-law passed away.  I emailed Camille about my situation and got a prompt response firstly expressing sympathy and then trying to be as creative as possible with developing a solution that would allow me to attend the funeral 3 days hence and still allow me to complete the IDC.  We worked it out that by doing the eLearning portion back in the States and compressing the in-country IDC days to 9, we had a fighting chance of covering all the material adequately. In the end, I arrived just hours before the last possible moment to start the class. Camille adapted and compressed things such that not only I, but the other two instructor candidates in the class were successful in both the IDC and the IE.

My friend with whom I was taking the class were NAUI Divemasters coming into the class, so we had to confront not only the compressed schedule but the additional task of converting to PADI methodology and standards.  This took extra time and patience on Camille's part, and I doubt that another IDC course director would have gone that extra mile for us.

In terms of the actual preparation we received for the IE through Camille's instruction, it was superb.  I feel that Camille was fairly tough on us with his grading during the IDC, but that made it more relaxed for us during the actual IE, where with the additional stress of the high-pressure context, it is easy to perform below your top level.  I think we never would have passed the IE without Camille's holding us to high standards during the IDC.

Finally, you are under considerable pressure while undergoing the IDC, and the first thing on your mind is not to be recording this memorable experience in photos - you are focusing on passing the IE.  However, it *is* a memorable experience - every step of it, and we were delighted that Camille kept good track of our in-water and out-of-water activities. I am so happy that I now have these photos of our experience as souvenirs, thanks to Camille's thoughtfulness.

Testimonial by Paul Goransson

Paul after successfully passing the PADI IE with PADI examiner Brendon Ford Sing

Come and see about me and my PADI IDC's, the next program starts 7th March in Moalboal, Philippines, which is followed by a program scheduled to start 28th March in Khao Lak, Thailand and this is followed by a program scheduled to start 14th April on Koh Lanta, Thailand.

See you there,
Camille

EFR Instructor course on Phuket, Thailand for February 2015

Besides the recent PADI IDC and PADI IE on Phuket, Thailand, we also completed the EFR Instructor course on Phuket, Thailand for February 2015.
We completed the last bits and pieces of the course straight after a very successful PADI IE and once that was done and over with, we were ready to prepare for a nice celebration dinner and some good times with good company, later that evening!

EFR Instructor course on Phuket, Thailand for February 2015

From left to right; Phil, Ray, myself and Paul

The next EFR Instructor course will be in conjunction with a PADI IDC, starting with 7th March in Moalboal, Philippines which is followed by 28th march in Khao Lak, Thailand and 14th April on Koh Lanta, Thailand.

Looking forward seeing you there.

Camille

Sunday, February 15, 2015

PADI IE on Phuket for February 2015 was very successful

The PADI IE on Phuket for February 2015 was very successful for the three candidates for award winning and Platinum PADI Course Director Camille Lemmens in conjunction with PADI 5* IDC Center 'Kiwidiver', nailing all segments of the PADI IE with high scores.
We have three very proud and brand new PADI Instructor in the house! It was hard work and it all paid off!
Well done Ray, Paul and Phil and good luck in the dive industry, where ever this may take you!

PADI IE on Phuket for February 2015 was very successful

From left to right; Kevin Black (fellow PADI Course Director and owner of 'Kiwidiver'), Ray (OWSI), Paul, (OWSI), Phil (OWSI), Brendon (PADI Examiner) and Camille (PADI Course Director)

The door to your PADI IDC is open, you can join any of my scheduled programs for this year, starting with 7th March in Moalboal, Philippines, followed by 28th March in Khao Lak, Thailand and 14th April on Koh Lanta, Thailand.

See you there!

Camille