Adventurer, survivor and our inspiration Greg Bertish launched his incredible new children’s book The Little Optimist at the Two Oceans Aquarium on 31 May 2017.
The motivational message of this book follows the journey of a small boat with a big heart, but Greg has an even deeper purpose in raising funds for non-profit organisations and aiding children in need. Greg’s event was about raising funds for Shark Spotters, of which he is a founding member.
Through a charity auction and book sales, more than R40 000 was raised and handed over to Shark Spotters. Our venue was packed and it was awesome to host a full-house event here in front of the I&J Ocean Exhibit.
Well done Greg!
Who are Shark Spotters?
Shark Spotters is a non-profit organisation dedicated to the pursuit of a sustainable coexistence of sharks and people. They are pioneers: their monitoring activities have gained international attention.
How do they do this?
Spotters & the flag system
Trained observers are strategically placed on beaches around the Cape. When a shark is sighted, or a sighting is reported, these spotters communicate this information, and the recommended action to be taken, to the public using their flag system.
Shark Spotters works with the City of Cape Town to maintain the world’s only adaptable exclusion net, which keeps marine animals (sharks included) at bay. This net is currently being used in Fish Hoek, and has low environmental impact, is adaptable to changing weather and does not harm sharks.
Awareness and education
By conducting outreach programmes to the community, and by maintaining a publically accessible information centre at Surfers Corner in Muizenberg, Shark Spotters helps the public make informed decisions. Only through education can shark-human harmony be reached.
Research and conservation
They do not simply monitor our beaches and provide world-class emergency response. Shark Spotters are actively conducting shark research into shark behaviour and creating awareness about both the safety issues concerning sharks, as well as their conservation.
The Little Optimist
The Little Optimist is currently available online. It is a story of hope, showing kids that anyone is capable of accomplishing amazing things. It inspires optimism, courage, uniqueness and never giving up. Written by Greg Bertish and illustrated by Chip Snaddon, it is inspired by real-life events and lessons.
For every copy of The Little Optimist sold, another is donated to a child in need. Furthermore, 40% of all profits are donated directly to partner NPOs, including Shark Spotters.