I AM WATER and Shark Spotters Day
I AM WATER teamed up with Cape Town’s The Shark Spotters and the Save Our Seas Shark Center to teach Cape Town’s Shark Spotters about the importance of the oceans and how their bodies are adapted to dive into the wilderness below the waves. Many Shark Spotters come from the underprivileged coastal communities around Cape Town, and even though they live and work a few meters from Cape Town’s famous oceans, many have never snorkeled in the ocean they watch every day. I AM WATER is teaming up with the Shark Spotters to get all their volunteers and employees salty!
The Shark Spotters are a conservation initiative helping humans and sharks coexist in Cape Town’s False Bay.
Shark Spotters keep surfers safe by watching the waters of False Bay where surfers and bathers enjoy the ocean. If a shark happens to swim close to a beach full of bathers, the Shark Spotters sound an alarm and put up a flag to warn people. With the help of marine scientists they have also designed a net that repels marine animals from the beaches humans use frequently. The uniquely designed net does not entangle the animals; instead the ocean’s creatures bounce off of it and swim away. The Shark Spotters are in charge of deploying and snorkeling along the inside of the nets everyday to ensure that no marine animals are harmed.
I AM WATER works with The Shark Spotters to educate them more about why the oceans are critical to the health of the planet.
They learn how the oceans are intimately linked to the global climate and livelihood of what happens on dry land. They also learn different ways to help conserve and protect our oceans for everyone to enjoy- why plastic debris is so harmful to ocean animals and why some fish are not sustainable for humans to eat. In short, they learn how to protect our oceans and why it is important for everyone to do so.
Then, if they do not have a reason already, we give them a reason to fall in love with the ocean—we put them in the water!
We educate them about how their bodies are uniquely adapted to dive under the waves and then we show them the ocean wilderness. We help them understand their body’s adaptations to hold its breath and dive like seals and other marine mammals. Few people understand their own body’s amazing ability to thrive underwater - how the body redirects blood flow and our spleen injects our blood stream with reserves of oxygen rich blood cells when we hold our breath. They get a chance to dive into the ocean and see the fish and swim through the kelp forests that nurture the fisheries that we eat. Now every time the Shark Spotters sit high up on the mountain side watching for sharks, they know they are intimately connected with their oceans and have a reason to protect them.
I AM WATER looks forward to all to ongoing projects with Cape Town’s Shark Spotters!