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Today we celebrate International Fisheries Day!

Theodora Sam is from Ghana in West Africa. She is currently a PhD candidate in resource management at the University of Tromsø in Norway. She is a Social Scientist, meaning that the focus of her research is people and not fish. She is trying to understand what people think about fisheries. As part of her research she has developed a questionnaire to elicit the mental models of the public about fisheries as social ecological systems. Theodora is spending a month at SAAMBR to validate her questionnaire with our uShaka Sea World visitors. The overall goal of her research is to contribute to the advancement of fisheries knowledge and the results from the study will provide guidelines towards advancing fisheries knowledge. This project is part of a wider Social Aspects of Fisheries for the 21st Century (SAF21) project funded by the European Union. SAAMBR is proud to be a partner in this international collaboration that seeks to improve the management of the world’s fisheries through a better understanding of the social aspects of fisheries.

Visitors to uShaka Sea World kindly filling out Theodora's questionnaire on fisheries.
Left to right:
Marlene Swart, Izak Palmer, Jessica Swart, Johan Swart, Theodora Sam
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uShaka Sea World Education is open for school bookings from the start of the first school term to the end of the last school term. During that time, we host around 100 000 learners. These learners come from all provinces across the country for a range of activities offered by uShaka Sea World Education. Some schools choose to come for a tour of the aquarium, some come to do a detailed guiding of uShaka Sea World and others come to do a lesson or a 4-hour course, and all activities include a dolphin presentation.

During the third term we are visited by the greatest number of schools due to touring schools from across South Africa, Swaziland and Lesotho. This is our busiest time of year where we reach 50 percent of visiting learners within just one school term. For many of these learners this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity! No matter what activity the learners participate in, they engage with our enthusiastic staff and hopefully walk away inspired to care for our oceans.
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We recently reported that SAAMBR staff raised R12 051.00 during a cake sale for the Zululand K9 Units.
Last weekend senior uShaka Sea World educator, Presha Soogrim met the handlers and their dogs, ecstatic to be the recipients of the collected funds. Every cent will be used in the struggle to combat rhino poaching.

Picture: Presha Soogrim and Phoenix, a Belgian Malinois.
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