Saturday, June 29, 2013
Alyssa is only 9 years old, but sharks are lucky to have here on their team! She already has passion and ambition to help these animals and will continue to be a force; fighting for sharks.
Alyssa’s dad recently sent me a newspaper article about her shark project and I was in tears by the end. I have written numerous times about the struggles, frustration and pain; all frequent emotions felt by shark conservationists across the planet, but articles like this give us that amazing 4 letter word, HOPE. I was completely blown away with her mention of me in the article and felt my heart overwhelmed with happiness.
Alyssa defines hope. Unbiased and raw hope, unscathed by the cynicism society can deposit on all of us. Kids like Alyssa are the reason to keep fighting. Kids deserve to see sharks and it is not only our right, but also our duty to fight for our oceans and for sharks. She shows the world that anyone, no matter how old you are, can be heard.
Alyssa's Shark Project
Saturday, June 8, 2013
Today people will celebrate the heart and soul of our planet, the oceans. In reality we should honor and respect the oceans each and every day, but dedicating a single day to bring the world together is definitely making a positive impact.
Get out the door today and put those toes in the surf. Dive, snorkel, surf, paddle board, kayak, swim or sail. Appreciate the beauty that covers 71 % of the Earth’s surface.
Wednesday, June 5, 2013
Just realized WAY too much time has passed since my last blog. 2013 is flying by and my time has been consumed with lots of exciting ventures. I have been writing a lot of articles and working on the biggest passion project of my life. Please stay tuned for the launch of my new website and non-profit. I have also been doing a lot of outreach and mentoring projects, one of which included an interview with 9-year-old Alyssa. She loves sharks and recently did a project for her school science fair about great white shark Mary Lee. Mary Lee was tagged by OCEARCH off the coast of Cape Cod Massachusetts and can be followed on their shark tracking website. Alyssa interviewed me via Skype and we talked about how the media portrays sharks as monsters.
I decided to interview Alyssa and this is some of the cool stuff she had to say about sharks. Despite only being 9, Alyssa is spreading the word for sharks and changing peoples’ perceptions about these misunderstood and amazing animals. Sharks are in deep trouble around the globe and Alyssa is a great ambassador showing kids they can be heard and they can make a difference on behalf of sharks and our oceans.
You can check out Alyssa’s BLOG for more on her love of sharks.
Me: What is your favorite shark?
Alyssa: Hammerheads are my favorite shark because I love the way their head forms. (They are MY favorite too Alyssa!)
Me: What is the most interesting thing you learned while doing your project?
Alyssa: I really like the theory about how sharks sleep.
Me: What can kids do the help sharks?
Alyssa: Kids can tell other people that sharks are not bad. It might make people think differently about sharks.
Conversations with kids always leave my heart filled with hope for the future of our oceans and for sharks. I get frustrated when I read news about fisherman killing sharks for records and trophies, like this MAKO recently killed for a reality television show.
I try and take a deep breath and think about students like Alyssa who are making a difference and realize just how much influence kids can have. This recharges my resolve to share a positive message about sharks with as many people as I can. The world of shark conservation is filled with disappointment, heart break and debilitating frustration, but there is hope and I always find it wrapped around classroom visits and interactions with students.