WHO WE ARE
Shark Allies is a non-profit organization originally established in 2007 in Hawaii and now incorporated in California. We are dedicated to the protection and conservation of sharks and rays and the ocean realm they live in. Seeing sharks as the GUARDIANS OF THE OCEAN, we want to do our part to be guardians as well.
Over the last decade a large part of our work has been focused on legislation that banned the trade of fins - one of the major driving forces behind the global, large scale slaughter of sharks. We were heavily engaged in the successful wave of shark fin bans that were passed in many Pacific Regions and US States since 2010.
Official stats from 10 years ago showed that of the 100 million sharks killed every year, roughly 73 million of them were taken to meet the demand for fins. Much progress has been made by non-profit organizations and activists to curb the consumption of shark fin soup. However many fear that the actual numbers continue to rise due to the fact that more countries have become involved in the trade.
One thing is for sure - too many sharks are being taken. So our work is far from being over.
Another aspect that we consider critical for shark conservation is the work to improve the image of sharks in the media and to replace pervasive misconceptions that plague the general public. Through our campaigns we hope to instill a new perspective, a new vision based on respect, not fear.
WHY DO WE NEED TO TAKE ACTION?
Consider the fact that 71% of our planet's surface is covered in water. It holds a multitude of resources, provides us with vast amounts of food, makes our weather and is the home to some of the most biodiverse ecosystems on earth. Yet, we mostly focus on what happens on land. Governments play an important roll in the protection of the oceans, but without the pressure of the public and campaigns supported by non-profit groups and activists, little gets accomplished. There is a need for new strategies that incorporate the broader public.
Moving forward Shark Allies is embarking on a slightly different journey - creating initiatives that complement and engage people on many levels. It is not about a handful of "Guardians" asking for support but an initiative that enables everyone to become a Guardian in one way or another.
HOW DO WE TAKE ACTION?
Creative approaches and new ideas are important. But most importantly we must figure out how to ACT. There is real danger of feeling paralyzed by the magnitude and multitude of issues. We believe there is power in finding forward movement, in taking steps even if they seem small and insignificant in the larger scheme of things. Momentum can only build once there is motion.
By creating opportunities for more people to become involved, no matter what their location, level of knowledge, income or background may be we hope to create an army of guardians that take action, stay engaged and become stewards for our beautiful ocean planet.