I created Dos Mares, in January 2013, to promote marine research in the Marine Protected Areas of Central America, with the collaboration of the local and international scientific community and interested organizations, committed to contribute to the scientific development and oceanic marine services in Central America through the following objectives:
- Enhancing and disseminating the importance of marine science in Central America
- Spreading achievements, trends and gaps of the marine science activity
- Promoting lines of marine research for the marine protected areas.
- Facilitate the cooperation between international and local scientists and students.
- Establishing marine scientific infrastructure for the marine protected areas.
- Collaborate in the surveillance efforts of the marine protected areas.
During 2013 and 2014 I have been developing a data base and the social network of Dos Mares in internet with a Dos Mares web site, a Facebook page, and Twitter site. I also prepared and published the first edition of the Science Matter Bulletin with relevant information about the Central America's trends, achievements and gaps regarding marine science. A second edition of this bulletin is being prepared at this time, and will be focused in an analysis of marine science policy, achievements and constrains in Central America.
At this time, Dos Mares has a web site, which is basically a data base displaying scientific articles abstracts and authors names, besides a list of marine protected areas of Central America. The site has the necessary links for those visitors who want to obtain the full scientific papers or more information about marine protected areas: www.dosmares.org So far, the site display 340 Biology/Ecology scientific abstracts. Most of the original papers are available for free. There are also marine articles about Physic, Geology, Chemistry and Sustainable Use. The site also show 926 names of marine scientists who have been worked in Central America. This data base is in continuing expansion. The site has been visited for most of the world's countries accounting for 1,058 visits during the year 2013 and 1,107 visits in so far this year. A new web site is under construction incorporating an updated layout.
Dos Mares's Facebook page shows information relevant about marine conservation and science in Central America and other countries. The page has 621 likes at this time. This Facebook page aim to promote the scientific knowledge between USA and Central America marine laboratories and citizens. The Dos Mares Twitter site (@dosmaresca) has a similar objective that Dos Mares Facebook page. In Twitter's page I have posted 2,969 posts and obtained 150 followers at this time.
Looking to the future I want Dos Mares can allocate financial resources to support marine research projects in marine protected areas in Central America trough the installed laboratories facilities in each country, including infrastructure improvements, equipment supply and training of students and scientists.
In order to develop fundraising campaigns Dos Mares must be a legal incorporated non-profit. All this previous efforts has been done voluntary. For the next year I need to incorporate Dos Mares as a legal non-profit with& 501(c)(3) tax exempt status that will allow me to begin the fundraising campaign to hire people including me and achieve the Dos Mares objectives. I will use the services of LegalZoom that will cost approximately $ 1,500.00 for the incorporation. At this time there is an open fundraising campaign to obtain this money in the Tilt site: http://tilt.tc/itEv
So, this is the situation of Dos Mares at this time. I hope to use this OpenChannels platform and forum to disseminate between colleagues the Dos Mares purpose, discussing about marine research in Central America and obtain support for this initiative. The following is a commentary of Jim Barborak of Colorado State University about Dos Mares:
"Dos Mares’ web site is one stop shopping mall for information on the dedicated efforts of Central Americans and cooperating individuals and organizations from around the world to conserve the rich patrimony of Mesoamerica’s coasts and oceans." James R. (Jim) Barborak Co-DirectorCenter for Protected Area Management and Training Colorado State University Warner College of Natural Resources-HDNRForestry Building 233, Fort Collins Colorado 80523-1480 USA.