Our Mission

Shark Allies is dedicated to the protection and conservation of sharks and rays. Our focus is on taking action, on raising awareness and guiding initiatives that reduce the destructive overfishing of sharks on a global scale.

 
 
 
Like them or not, the ocean needs sharks, and we need the ocean
— Shark Allies Founder Stefanie Brendl

Why We Protect Sharks

 

You might wonder why we dedicate our efforts to sharks when there seem to be so many other issues that need attention. There are many reasons, but the heart of the matter is that someone has to be there for sharks without compromise; without distraction. Sharks need a strong lobby that will stick with the task, day in and day out. Many shark species are threatened and we don’t have decades to get a handle on these issues. If we want to catch this before we hit the point of no return, then action is needed now.

Sharks are not the most popular animal in the ocean, and that is reflected in the lack of attention their plight is receiving. The killing of millions of sharks stays under the radar, while news of one shark attack hits the news on a global level. Because there are so many urgent problems that need to be dealt with, sharks are under-represented even within the ocean conservation world. Non-profits divide and conquer issues, focusing on small niches of specialty with hopes that the combined efforts result in stronger, healthier oceans. While some focus on plastics pollution, climate change, or on saving marine mammals, Shark Allies represent sharks and rays exclusively. It is the only way the limited manpower of the advocacy world can cover the most territory. Since we cannot rely on governments to save our oceans, it is left to activists and advocacy groups to carry that torch, and Shark Allies is proud to be one of the organizations working in the trenches.

Our Story

 

Shark Allies did not appear overnight as a shark-saving concept, but rather grew slowly and organically over the years. Before Shark Allies was officially formed, we gathered years of experience working in the field, diving with sharks and introducing thousands of people to sharks through dive experiences on the Northshore of Oahu. During those years we also participated in many research projects and film productions. From this basis, outreach to schools and the public evolved easily, and eventually, it made sense to create a non-profit that would organize the work in a strategic way. The legislative work began in 2010 with the creation of the first shark fin trade ban in the world, which we were privileged to help develop and bring to passage. This victory propelled us to a new level of work, which has continued to grow and spread across the region, and our accomplishments continued to grow.

Shark Allies is an organization that invites participation and hopes to inspire the public. We thrive on the power and energy that our hard working volunteers bring to the cause. There is no limit to what we can achieve for sharks if we lift the issue out of the shadows and bring it into the light of the public.

We couldn’t do what we do without support. It is our task to find the way and shape the strategy, but it is everyone else’s willingness to get involved that will empower the movement.

 

Shark Allies is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization originally established in 2007 in Hawaii and incorporated in California in 2014