Collaborating with the HKEnergy Saving & Environment Concern Alliance and Cyberport HK, Ocean Geographic Society took on battle in the shark fin consumption capital of the world with 1000 Kids pledging the message “I am the future, I won’t eat Shark fins”.
On 9 July 2011 in Hong Kong, under a scorching summer sun, the large group of children aged 7 to 18 were joined in their pledging ceremony by international luminaries of the sea, David Doubilet, Sylvia Earle, Jennifer Hayes, Michael AW, local celebrities Elizabeth Quat, Tat Dik, Kay Tse, as well as representatives from all leading shark conservation NGOs. Committed to the cause, the adults and children celebrated their cause with song and dance performances prior to affirming the pledge. After making the pledge all participants are now duly recognized as shark ambassadors.
Director and Board Member of Ocean Geographic Society, Michael AW said, “Children are our future. Their decision made today to not eat shark fins will greatly reduce future demand. This shark saving campaign is an ongoing and result oriented campaign - calling 1000 local students to step up as ‘Shark Ambassadors’. They have participated in different activities to encourage their family and friends not to eat shark fins, and will continue to spread the message worldwide.”
The Founding President of Energy Saving & Environment Concern Alliance, Elizabeth Quat said,“Each year, over 73,000,000 sharks are killedto feed the growing demand of shark fins. This has severely spoiled the marine system and pushed many shark species to the brink of extinction. The balanced relationship between nature and human beings is now destroyed. Hence, we introduced this ‘Save the Sharks Campaign’ in Hong Kong to encourage the participation of the new generation and raise their awareness of shark preservation.”
Cyberport’s Chief Operating Officer, Mark Clift said, “Cyberport has always been a supporter of protecting the world's resources and particularly the marine ecosystem. We have organized various educational activities to encourage the public and youth, focusing on awareness of environmental protection. We think it is important to respond to this issue on individual, company and society levels. For a long time our company has had a policy banning the serving of shark fins at any company banquet or function, and we encourage all of our partners to do likewise. We want to create a modeling effect to encourage others and support the protection of sharks.”
Associated with the 1000Kids ONE Message project was the “Save the Sharks Video Competition”. The three highest-scoring winners from primary and secondary school were presented with the “Celebrate the Sea” Merit of Excellence and Outstanding Achievement awards for their video message of shark conservation. All three winners are very excited about their once-in-a-lifetime experience of swimming with whale sharks in the Philippines, sponsored by Donsol Eco Tours. They are also eager to take up the responsibility of marine protection and shark preservation.
On 10th July, Elizabeth Quat kicked off the “Beauty of Sharks” and Antarctic photo exhibition at Olympian City HK, featuring images contributed by David Doubilet, Amos Nachoum, Chris and Monique Fallows, Amanda Cotton,Brian Skerry, Doug Perrine, Henry Yip and Michael AW. This two month long exhibition will be moved to 8 various shopping malls throughout Hong Kong, raising public awareness of sharks and ocean conservation.
*1000KidsONEMessage is an Ocean Geographic initiative
The large group of children aged 7 to 18 during their pledge at the ceremony on 9 July 2011, at Hong Kong’s Cyberport.