Food for thought Fridays; Inspiring conservationists not just saving Whales but the world
What are your plans for the weekend..? Perhaps you’ll spend your time patrolling the southern Ocean protecting innocent Whales from illegal Whaling, Maybe you’ll travel to the other side of the world to address International diplomats, how about making an award winning documentary to raise awareness of the greatest dangers our world today faces? If these things don’t seem possible how about dedicating your weekend to educating the youth of today about the dangers our oceans face tomorrow if drastic changes aren't implemented now?
Seem too complicated? Well perhaps your right; but this Friday afternoon Whales in Paradise would like share a little food for thought and a lot of inspiration. We would like to share the stories of inspiring conservationist’s that spend not only their weekends but their whole lives insuring that our Oceans are not only safe for the beautiful majestic creatures we see whale watching but all of the oceans inhabitants.
As you can imagine, seeing such beautiful creatures in their natural environment everyday is one of the greatest jobs in the world. The Whales in Paradise crew consider themselves pretty lucky, our dedicated crew know the importance of protecting the marine environment around them in order to protect the creatures they love the most. Cruising in such a pristine environment like the Gold Coast has compelled them to have a greater awareness of the world around them and the importance of maintaining its beauty.
So it goes without saying that we love nothing more than hearing about dedicated, compassionate, inspiring and motivated conservationists fighting not just for the whales but for the world.
Tune in each Friday for the next 5 weeks to discover another inspirational conservationist’s story. Our hope is that their stories will inspire you to get out there and spend your weekend immersing yourself in the wonderful world around you.
We hope that these stories inspire you as much as they have us.
Madison Stewart (Officially known as Shark Girl)
Madison Stewart affectionately regarded as Shark Girl is a 20 year old independent film maker who is successfully using her talents to turn around common Shark misconceptions. Madison has a unique love for the ocean environment and spends her time documenting Sharks and raising awareness of the dangers they face. Madison’s most recent project “shark Girl” a feature documentary aired by the ABC has been making waves on the International stage picking up a number of prestigious awards including Finalist in the best of category at the 37th International Wildlife Film Festival USA 2014 as well as a prestigious Gold Medal at the New York Festival 2014.
Madison describes Sharks as a girl’s best friend, But don’t be mistaken Madison doesn't expect you to love Sharks but she does expect you to respect them. The self taught film-maker swims with Sharks whether it be Reef Sharks , Silver Tips, Hammerheads, Great Whites and Tiger’s if it’s a Sharks it has this conservationists attention.
Madison’s love for Sharks started from a young age, encouraged from the beginning at age 2 by living and travelling around the Great Barrier Reef on a yacht with her parents. The love continued to flourish from there, ultimately leading her to leave school at 14 opting for home-schooling to travel the world raising awareness of the injustices faced by her underwater counterparts and collecting footage of experiences she likens to “playing tug of war with puppy’s, this amazing Aussie is fearless having clocked over 450 dives by age 18 majority with the Sharks she is fighting to protect.
So what prompted such a drastic change in lifestyle? What was the turning point that made Madison Stewart leave school and dedicate her life to one of the most feared predators in our world today? Well that might just be it, the common misconception that her best friends are deadly killers.
At age 14 Madison went diving on the Great Barrier Reef only to discover first hand that Shark numbers were rapidly declining in her own backyard, One major issue contributing to this decline is the legal; yes legal! Shark fishing industry on the Great Barrier Reef as startling as this may be more than two thirds of the Great Barrier Reef is open to fishing.
Madison has different view of sharks and she wants you to know about it. Take the time to check out her Facebook page and leave your message of support, keep up to date with all of her latest campaigns and lend a hand to help her achieve the Global impact she’s well on her way to achieving.
Feeling inspired? Well perhaps this weekend you could do something a little different, something that allows you to draw inspiration from the world around you; whether it be a stroll somewhere along the beautiful Gold Coast coastline, A swim at the world class beaches, A trip to the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, An exciting Hot Air Balloon ride with Hot Air Gold Coast or a relaxing cruise along the Gold Coast canals to view the homes of the rich and famous, continuing out through the Gold Coast Seaway into the open ocean right onto the Humpback Highway. If you come cruising with Whales in Paradise we guarantee you will see something naturally unforgettable.
Cruises depart 3 times a day from the heart of Surfers book your seat now.