The North Sulawesi Watersports Association

North Sulawesi Watersports Association - Logo
Formed in mid 1998, the North Sulawesi Watersports Association (NSWA) has adopted as its primary goal the promotion of North Sulawesi as a world-class marine tourism destination through fostering high standards of service and safety and especially by promoting more environmentally-friendly watersports activities within the Bunaken National Park, Lembeh Strait and all marine areas of the North Sulawesi province. The NSWA strives for environmentally-responsible and socially-acceptable common solutions to problems that affect not only the marine tourism sector, but also those which generally effect the health of North Sulawesi's valuable marine ecosystems and thereby the local communities which also rely upon them for food and employment.

The NSWA is an official forum for marine tourism operators to express their united concerns to government agencies and officials and to conduct large-scale public relations and education campaigns to benefit both marine tourism and the rich and diverse marine ecosystems of North Sulawesi.

As of January 2013, the NSWA included the following members:
Stopping destructive fishing

The initial concern of the NSWA was the amount of dynamite and cyanide fishing that they were witnessing - it seemed that this was on the increase and if nothing was done then the reefs in North Sulawesi were in serious danger.

In order to combat this distructive fishing, the dive operators donated their boats and fuel to the water police and rangers so that they could undertake patrols of the area. The customers were asked to donate US$5 to help provide funds, and this was so successful that a number of fisherman were sent to prison - a first for Indonesia! The NSWA provided advice to the management board of the marine park and this voluntary fee from customers has now been replaced by the entrance fee which everyone has to pay to enter the marine park.

Making sure local communities benefit

The NSWA recognises that direct action is not the only initiative that is required in order to protect the reefs of Bunaken. If the local communities can see the direct benefits of tourism then they will also get involved in reef conservation. The NSWA are therefore invloved in projects to support this, including: Teaching children The NSWA is also making their own operations more reef-friendly. They have banned all their members from using anchors, produced a reef-friendly booklet for tourists, and designed and constructed mooring bouys on some of the dive sites.

Influencing local government

The Bunaken Marine Park is managed by a 19-member committee called DEWAN which is headed by the Vice-Governor of North Sulawesi. It is a multistakeholder board consisting of dive operators, academia, pertinent government officials and village representatives. The NSWA represents the dive operators, and can therefore directly influence the management of the marine park, and promote conservation efforts and the interests of divers.

Activities and Achievements

The NSWA has made significant strides in improving the management and conservation of Bunaken National Park and surrounding marine ecosystems and in conferring concrete benefits of tourism to the villagers living within the park. These achievements include: Support us and dive with us

Next time you make plans to dive North Sulawesi, please ask if your dive operator is part of the NSWA. Members will display the NSWA logo - a tarsier riding a seahorse.

Every time you dive with a member, a small proportion of your entrance fee gets redirected back to the NSWA. More funds means more conservation and more benefits for the local community. Help us to help them.

Donation Information

Persons interested in making financial or equipment donations to either the NSWA scholarship fund or the Bunaken Preservation Fund may contact the NSWA treasurer, Mr. Roel Jong-Dikkers (Email:, phone: (62) 431-826151, hp: 081-24302974, or arrange a wire transfer directly to the respective accounts:

Scholarship Fund
Bank Danamon, Manado Branch
Jl. Toar 17, Manado, Sulawesi
Account: Juud Dikkers (NSWA Scholarship)
Account #: 164 537 06

Bunaken Preservation Fund
Bank Danamon, Manado Branch
Jl. Toar 17, Manado, Sulawesi
Account: Juud Dikkers (NSWA entrance fee)
Account #: 164 537 14

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