Scuba For Change

Calapan North Rd., Puerto Galera, Oriental Mindoro

Scuba For Change
5.0
5.0 Stars

1 Reviewer

  • 5 stars 1
  • 4 stars 0
  • 3 stars 0
  • 2 stars 0
  • 1 star 0
  • 1 Reviews
  • 35 Recommend
  • 1 Reviewers
Category:
Great Outdoors
Business Hours
Reopens: 9:00a - 6:00p
Phone
+639167945624

Hours

  • Sunday
    • 9:00a - 6:00p
  • Monday
    • 9:00a - 6:00p
  • Tuesday
    • 9:00a - 6:00p
  • Wednesday
    • 9:00a - 6:00p
  • Thursday
    • 9:00a - 6:00p
  • Friday
    • 9:00a - 6:00p
  • Saturday
    • 9:00a - 6:00p

Payment Options

Cash

Most Recent Reviews

Marjorie G.
5.0 Stars
5

I went on a dive for a cause with some bloggers last month at Scuba for Change dive center located at Tamaraw Beach Resort, Aninuan Beach. SFC is a not-for-profit dive center and a unique social enterprise scuba diving business in Puerto Galera. They offer dive trips and scuba courses led by their PADI-certified scuba diving instructors. SFC's profits are used to provide children and business grants, staff profit share, as well as to prepare for the organization's future expansion in developing countries.

50% of Scuba for Change's profits goes to its main beneficiary, Stairway Foundation. Stairway is a non-stock, non-profit, non-government child care organization in Puerto Galera. It was built in 1990 by Lars C. Jorgensen and Monica D. Ray as an alternative program for the most marginalized and abused street-children in the Philippines.

We were able to try their Discovery Diving course; which is the kind of diving that people with no diving certificate can do. It involves an operation where you will learn how each scuba diving equipment works, quick training in the swimming pool, then a 20-30 minute dive in the open water. All equipment including the scuba diving suit is provided for. All scuba diving instructors are PADI certified so you don't have to worry if it's your first time to scuba dive. You will be assisted by the experts.

Soon after, we were out in the sea to do the actual diving. I was both nervous and excited, I mean, this is it, I was going to dive underwater. I'm going to see some fish and corals instead of swimming pool tiles! I was on the second batch so I had to wait for my turn.

The first batch complained about blurry water and practically seeing nothing underwater so the boatman steered the boat to another location for the second batch. I was the first to go to the water. I sat on the edge of the boat, they told me to place a hand on my mask and the other on my chest. They counted from 1 to 3 then pushed me off the boat. I plummeted head first down the water. Soon I was floating on the surface with the help of the BCD that I'm wearing.

Gracian, one of the dive instructors of SFC assisted me. Slowly I pressed the BCD deflator button to sink in the water. Immediately I felt the pressure on my ears and had to equalize by pressing my nose. No sooner than I did, the water made its way inside my mask making me scared out of my wits. In my panic I have forgotten what they taught us about mask clearing and so I scrambled up to the surface.

I took a deep breath and did it for the second time. The attempt was a lot worse than the first. Again, the water made its way inside my mask. I frantically used the "out-of-air" signal instead of the "ascend" or the "something is wrong" sign. Nevertheless, the diving instructor led me to the surface. Immediately, I removed the regulator from my mouth and gasped for air, gulping sea water in the process. The salty water reached the back of my throat inducing a retching fit.

Gracian told me to try once more. My body doesn't want to but my mind told me to go. A friend offered to exchange her mask with mine since it's the mask that's been causing me problems. That solved the mask situation. This time I was able to equalize with ease, no more water getting inside the mask, yay!

Through my foggy mask I gazed over the world down below where time seems to stop. I watched in fascination as fishes of varied species and colors swim by. I stood in awe of coral reefs covering the sea floor, some were swaying ever so gently like a silent welcome. Everything looks surreal, and everything is so calm. At one point we swam so deep I was afraid of grazing over the corals, then I realized that looking through the mask may have made it appear like we were closer to them than we really are.

The view takes my breath away, of this world so different from us. How many times do we get to see this marvelous world in our lifetime? Certainly not a lot. Yes, the beginning is a struggle, but it's a reminder that great things are not supposed to be easy. That if you hold on just a little bit more, your effort will be worth it.

And the beauty of this experience does not merely lie on the marvelous opportunity to dive but also from the fact that Scuba for Change is giving some locals a source of livelihood and a foundation a means to support and save children who are victims of abuse.

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