It’s amazing how many people who live surrounded by ocean, just a few feet above sea level, never learn to swim. In May 2014 National Geographic ‘ocean hero’ Jon Bowermaster organized a learn-to-swim camp in the Maldives to teach 50 3rd graders and 20 of their burka-clad mothers how to swim. In a place more threatened by global climate change and rising sea levels than almost anywhere on the planet, it is particularly important that its residents understand what’s at risk. Diving into the ocean is a big first step in that we only protect what we know.
Also featured, former President Mohammed Nasheed, the so-called “Island President,” known for his international work on behalf of protecting island nations from rising sea levels. Just after this filming he was arrested in his own country, charged with “terrorism,” and sentenced to 13 years in prison.