The great white shark conservation project in South Africa

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2017: 31 Aug, 14 Sep, 30 Sep, 14 Oct, 31 Oct, 14 Nov, 30 Nov
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: The great white shark conservation project in South Africa

Environment

The Great White Shark Research And Conservation Project is run in partnership with a world-leading organisation, focusing on the Great White Shark. Founded in 1989 purely as a research centre, it is now a large commercial operation, establishing responsible shark tourism as an educational experience.

The project's motto is "misconception, education and preservation" and the aim is to educate as many people as possible on the misplaced, negative stereotypes of this apex predator, and in turn, help to preserve the species which for so long has received pejorative press.

The project also carries out a vast amount of field research on the sharks, tracking individuals and gathering population data, whilst also studying their behaviour in the wild. This allows a better understanding of great whites as a species, honing and improving conservation efforts to ensure the survival of this magnificent predator.

Community

Whilst volunteering abroad is largely a positive thing, participants must be wise with the organisations they select. There are, unfortunately, a number of organisations who simply want to meet the demand of individuals looking to help, without considering the impact an influx of volunteers can have on host communities (particularly in developing countries.) With that in mind, we are careful to consider all elements of our projects, adhering to the strict Responsible Travel policy and providing volunteer communities that are beneficial to all involved.

An understanding of the host community and their needs is paramount to the success of any project. Thus, we will continue to respect a number of long-term commitments designed to aid these local communities. These commitments include pledges such as: the adoption of good environmental, ethical and social practices; valuable support; the employment of as many local people as possible; and the creation of an overall socially-sustainable volunteer initiative. These elements are key to keeping the host community’s needs at heart, and allow us to maintain our promise of providing ethically sound volunteer activities.

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