After previous plans for a DM internship had fallen apart, I found Project Laut and thought this has what I’m looking for, so why not. It turned out to be better than I ever could’ve imagined, and I wouldn’t have traded it for anything. I had been looking for a DMT with an ACTUAL conservation project, not just a dive shop that claimed to do more than they did. Project Laut is not only active in coral restoration, but they’re also the lead project monitoring the species of Hawksbill turtles around Penida. Everyday we are either out diving or at the shop, building coral spiders and tending to our coral garden, or updating the turtle database. Even on dive days, someone always has a GoPro to log any of turtles we may come across (which is often). You can tell how much Joma, the lead instructor, cares about the projects and his passion easily transferred to myself and the other interns.
In terms of the dive training, Joma is an incredible instructor. I started with only 9 dives, all from 3 years earlier, and was quite nervous. From the first dive I felt extremely safe and comfortable diving with him, and I’d be able to voice my nerves without thinking twice. In my 12 weeks I learned so much, and logged over 100 dives! Definitely coming out of this internship feeling confident in my diving abilities. I valued my time so much in fact that I’m continuing my training with Project Laut, starting their instructor course next week.
On top of all this, Nusa Penida is paradise, and I definitely fell in love with the island and it’s people. I’m leaving the internship with a ton more dives, some amazing new relationships, and even some welding skills :)