Founded by three ocean lovers in 2015, who found each other on the beautiful island of Gili Air, the Gili Shark Conservation is a project filled with passion and engagement for the ocean and it’s marine life.
“When we started our project we didn’t have all the knowledge neither did we have years of experience. All we had was an intention, a lot of energy and the desire to be part of the solution. We didn’t want to stand on the sideline anymore and watch how other people try to solve a problem which we are all responsible for.” Rose Huizenga – Co-founder Gili Shark Conservation Project
Think about it. We know more about the surface of our moon than we know about our oceans. In a world where everything is overshared, overexposed, and overused, the ocean is our last frontier, where fascinating new discoveries are happening every day.
Every day our research team goes out to collect abundance data within the zones of the Gili Matra Marine Recreational Reserve to assess the health of the environment and act to enhance marine protection and health where necessary. Our mission is to promote conversation efforts through education and research.
To achieve our goal we conduct research using multiple research methods including; underwater roving video surveillance, roving survey dives, photographic identification, coral health index surveys, coral restoration, and land & marine based time-lapse projects. Through our weekly conservation classes at the local school and our Plastic Free Paradise Campaign we educate the local community and visitors of the Gili Islands about the importance of our ocean and what we can do to protect it.
WORKING TOGETHER TO PROTECT THE OCEAN
We share our data sets with the Indonesian government; providing critical data of our assessment of the zones within the Gili Matra Marine Recreational reserve to stimulate positive changes where necessary. We also source our data out to multiple local and international organizations and researchers to help combat data deficiency. Scientists still do not know a lot about the population dynamics and health of many species of sharks.
Our data is helping to inform organizations like Shark-Base and eOceans to have an impact on shark conservation globally. We are creating an open-access abundance database available free to anyone who asks. Getting this information to more people will help us in our fight to save the sharks of Indonesia. Because we believe a strong community of different individuals can make a bigger impact on marine protection than a single organization.”
It’s our dream to be an international marine research center that host researchers, scientist and oceans lovers from all over the world. A place in the heart of our community where we provide education in solving oceans-related issues. A home to people that want to make the world a little bit more beautiful.
We want to educate, train and empower local talent to become leaders of the Gili Island’s growing tourism industry and guardians of its natural environment. We hope that one day we can provide scholarships to Indonesians who want to pursue a career in marine conservation but don’t have the financial or emotional support to make it happen.
We think dreaming big is the right thing to do for the world. Think about it: big dreams are the reasons why the world changes for the better. It’s the reason why there have been so many great inventions and cured for diseases among other great stuff.
We want to inspire you to leave your mark on the world. Know that you can achieve anything you set out to. No dream is unattainable. Dare to dream. Strive to really live your life doing what you really want to do.
WHAT CAN YOU DO TO HELP?
We are always looking for enthusiastic people who want to live in paradise and make a difference during their holiday. Help the sharks and the community of Gili Air by giving your time and love. You don’t need to be a shark expert or a diver to join our project, however a passion and commitment to shark conservation is important. We appreciate all the unique skills that you can bring to our project and welcome people of every corner of the globe. Click here to directly apply for a spot in our research team.
WHAT ELSE CAN YOU DO?
Learn about sharks and marine life and educate your friends and family! Sharks are threatened in large part because people believe they are voracious predators. We know this is not the case. Without sharks in our ocean less people will come diving, people will lose their jobs, other species of fish will die out and our coral reefs will become unhealthy. Unhealthy reefs and less fish could mean no diving, no fishing and eventually no us.
- Support laws protecting sharks and banning shark finning.
- Support our shark research and conservation organization by getting involved. The more we learn about sharks, the more we learn about their importance.
- Scuba dive with sharks responsibly and help to educate other divers on their importance.
- Do not eat or purchase shark products such as shark fin soup, shark leather, or jewelry.