Award-winning resort joins initiative to celebrate the diverse marine life of the Maldives and promote responsible disposal of plastic waste Dusit Thani Maldives resort recently sponsored the first Manta Festival to take place in the Baa Atoll UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Organized by the Manta Trust, in cooperation with the Biosphere Reserve Office, Baa Atoll Council and Dharavandhoo Council, the exciting event helped to raise awareness of manta rays, the gentle giants of the ocean, which aggregate in numbers of over 200 in the renowned Hanifaru Bay, and the effects of marine plastic pollution on our oceans. As part of the event, and in line with Dusit Thani Maldives’ commitment to supporting local education, the resort donated snorkeling equipment to Milandhoo School in Baa Atoll, so the children can safely explore the local waters and learn more about local marine life. Mr. Shafee Ali, Outreach Officer for the Biosphere Reserve Office, said, “This event has been specially designed to bring together all the schools, communities, resorts and environmental organizations in Baa Atoll to celebrate and raise awareness of what is really important to us all – our ocean – and the danger posed by huge human-driven threats just off our shores. Here we can all come together to start to make a change.” Mr Reinhold Johann, General Manager, Dusit Thani Maldives, said, “Through our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programmes, Dusit Thani Maldives is committed to supporting many local projects, and we are delighted we could donate the snorkeling equipment so the young generation can improve their swimming skills while learning more about the ocean and how to protect it.” Among the other local initiatives and schools that Dusit Thani Maldives supports are Dhonfanu Pre-School, first ever D-BTECH Hospitality Lab at Daravandhoo School and many others. Funds for these projects are raised mainly through guest donation programmes and employee contributions.