INTERNATIONAL SHARK GUARDIAN DAY - 26 February 2018
It's been 5 years since Shark Guardian became a UK Charity and we want to celebrate this with all our followers, dive centers and supporters who have made this possible. Although the charity is only 5 years old (registered in 2013), the journey to get to this point has been in the works for over 20 years. Shark Guardian has inspired and educated thousands of people from all ages worldwide, participated in conservation activities to assist with the ban of transportation of shark related products as well as removing shark products from restaurants and hotels, conducted and collaborated with international researchers to provide valuable data for policy changes, and led shark diving expeditions in several locations around the world.
As with any new charity or organization, we have gone through many changes and have evolved to expand our projects and activities worldwide, while staying true to our goals and objectives. Those objectives are:
TO ADVANCE CONSERVATION OF SHARKS SPECIES WORLDWIDE IN INTERNATIONAL WATERS THROUGH PUBLIC EDUCATION, CONSERVATION, PROMOTING RESEARCH AND PROJECTS SEEKING TO ACHIEVE THE SUSTAINABLE MANAGEMENT OF SHARKS.
Looking back, how it all started:
Shark Guardian was created by Brendon Sing and Elizabeth Ward-Sing. A husband and wife team with a great passion for diving, conservation and sharks. Brendon is from South Africa and this is where he learnt to dive and got involved with shark diving and research. He relocated to Asia in 2001 working in the diving and tourism industry as a dive instructor. Liz is from the UK with a background in physiotherapy. She achieved her dive instructor rating and met Brendon while traveling and diving in Thailand.
Together Liz and Brendon worked in the dive industry for a couple of years but realized that although they enjoyed working in dive centers and resorts, they wanted to do more for sharks and conservation on a larger scale. Just giving weekly talks and presentations to guests in resorts or dive locations was not enough. Most dive centers and resorts have to be so focused on their businesses that they have limited time and resources for conservation projects and activities. Following their passion for sharks, Brendon and Liz decided to dedicate their energy into shark conservation full time. They wanted to be the voice and arm for shark conservation by divers, for divers everywhere in the world. And so Shark Guardian was created.
Where we are now:
Shark Guardian has four arms of operations: Conservation, Education, Research and Expeditions. Each of the operational arms are supported by one another for achieving the goals of the charity.
Since 2013 Shark Guardian has been actively leading, pursuing, collaborating and enforcing shark and marine conservation projects by:
- networking and joining forces with organizations to fight against the trade and transportation of shark related products
- Inspiring the public and the next generation to get involved with campaigns for the conservation of sharks and general marine life, via education workshops or activities (land and ocean based) and supporting student projects.
- Partnering with more than 30 international dive centers who share conservation activities, education and research projects.
In the past 5 years, Shark Guardian have:
- travelled around the world speaking to thousands of people each year, sharing their expertise and passion for sharks, explaining why sharks are important and what the public can all do to help these creatures survive.
- Run dive community and general public events (at least 20 times per year).
- Created a program for snorkelers and divers to learn more about sharks and to contribute to citizen science research.
- Published a book about sharks for schools and students. The first book has been delivered to hundreds of schools in more than 30 countries and is now being translated into different languages. The second book is also in development.
Shark Guardian Research Projects
Research is hugely important for shark conservation. By working and collaborating with shark researchers and experts from around the world, Shark Guardian contributes to research projects by engaging with public divers and snorkelers. This is Citizen Science and it offers the opportunity for anyone to get involved and contribute towards research. Shark Guardian is currently involved with 3 main citizen science research projects:
Whale Shark Project
Spot the Leopard Shark - Thailand
Expeditions bring all the Shark Guardian operational arms together, to educate people as well as getting involved with research, plus the best part of all: to go diving with sharks! Diving with sharks is what it is all about and is vitally important for shark conservation. Shark Guardian organizes several dive expeditions each year and more locations will be coming soon.
Join us on International Shark Guardian Day - 26 February 2018
Discount on Shark Guardian Gear
In Celebration of International Shark Guardian day and the 5 year anniversary of Shark Guardian, we are offering a special discount on Shark Guardian merchandise from the Shark Guardian Online Store for a full week. Receive a 10% discount on all Shark Guardian merchandise from the 21st February to 28th February 2018. Use the code sharkguardian5years as a promotion code when purchasing any items.
Shark Guardian will also be holding a shark photograph competition where the winner can WIN a Shark Guardian pack that includes and t-shirt and wrist band (including FREE postage!)! Enter by emailing your best shark image to firstname.lastname@example.org with the email subject 'Shark Photo Competition'. Winners will be announced on 1st March 2018.
Thanks to everyone who has helped Shark Guardian achieve this milestone. We look forward to another productive 5 years! Please continue to support us through social media channels and don't forget to share your educational opportunities (schools, dive locations etc ect) so we can continue to educate as many people about sharks and marine life.