A great start to 2018 with a number of new Shark Guardian Dive centers and school visits in Asia to raise awareness and grow our shark education programs. A little late for the first review of the year for Shark Guardian – please forgive us given the huge amount of activity over the last few weeks!! It’s been a very busy start to 2018 for the Shark Guardian team and it does not seem to be slowing down – good job the team is expanding once more, with more valuable trustees as well as volunteers providing important consultancy time.
The first quarter of 2018 has seen Shark Guardian take on four new Shark Guardian Dive Centers. These are in Thailand as well as the Philippines, growing our current list of worldwide supporting centers to 39! See all the Shark Guardian Dive centers here
Shark Guardian delivered their first free educational presentation of the year to the dive and tourist community of Ao Nang, Krabi in Thailand. A full house of enthusiastic people joined Directors Liz and Brendon at Pooky O’Learys, setting a fabulous tone for the year ahead. At the end of the month the new, limited edition, Chinese version of the Shark Guardian classic ‘soup’ T-shirt was released in time for Chinese New Year.
With Chinese New year approaching, Shark Guardian was deeply saddened to see images taken by a friend in Hong Kong, showing ever increasing shark fin supplies in the back streets of Hong Kong. Despite media attention and reports of a slowing trade in the shark fin export hub of the world, these images motivate our team to be ever more proactive in our education. If the demand stops, the killing will stop – shark finning is still as prevalent as ever and people are still buying and consuming shark products without a full understanding of the impact. Education is key.
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February ended with the first ever International Shark guardian Day on the 26th! Shark Guardian Dive Centers around the world ran special events and Diver Program days. Plus it was a time for the team to reflect on 5 busy, challenging yet productive years as a charity.
Scuba Junkie Seas in Malaysia held their 5th annual Shark Week. Shark Guardian could not be present but sent posters, books and a personal video to help join in the shark education vibes. The team hopes to be represented next year in person.
There were more local Thailand events in Krabi as well as Koh Lanta. Shark Guardian Dive Center Hidden Depths hosted another fabulous event at their dive center. Plus Liz and Brendon joined the Scubafish Dive Center boat. Brendon had an opportunity to give a boat presentation to all the divers about sharks as well as take part in a coral propagation training dive.
March certainly was busy for Shark Guardian! In the final week, Brendon Sing headed to Bangkok for an action packed 4 days of educational presentations and shark swim fundraisers. In just one week, Brendon went to 4 schools and presented to over 2,000 students about sharks and conservation!
At the end of the week Shark Guardian visited KPIS International School on Friday, 30th March, 2018. This event was the third visit to KPIS and pupils were very excited to have Shark Guardian back. As well as educational presentations about sharks, the event was also to raise funds and donations to support Shark Guardian conservation campaigns and activities worldwide. There were lots of fun activities as well as students combining to swim as far as they could to reach the total distance from the school to the closest beach and ocean. A big thanks to all parents, students and staff who contributed to this fundraising event.
Looking forward to 2nd Quarter 2018
The second quarter has started with a fun trip to Singapore for the ADEX expo and now the team are looking ahead to May. Shark Guardian will attend the Malaysian International Dive Show (MIDE) in Kuala Lumpur and the second ever UK Shark Fest – keep an eye on social media for details of these awesome sharky events.