My professional background is in the non-profit world. Supporting causes whenever I can is an important part of building up community and supporting those in need. Non-profit workers are passionate individuals who contribute their skills and expertise in areas that need a lot of attention. As Truli grows, I want to make sure I can put a spotlight on those organizations that are aligned with Truli's mission to ensure that anyone who wears a Truli is an ambassador to the marine environment where they love to play. Education is an important aspect in advocacy, which is why I have chosen to support Sharks4Kids by donating 1% of all wetsuit sales in 2019.
I had heard about Sharks4Kids while working in the scuba diving industry, but when Jillian Morris-Brake, the founder and leader of S4K, reached out to me about becoming an Ambassador for Truli Wetsuits, I learned more about it and really gained a true appreciation for the work she does. As I got to know Jillian, I discovered that her experiences as a woman in the marine industry had been similar to mine and that we shared a common goal to encourage more access to women and girls into water sports. Additionally, she seeks to educate young people on the amazing career options that STEM offers encouraging more girls to enter the traditionally male-dominated industry.
I am so proud that Truli Wetsuits is now in a place where we can start to contribute financially to help Jillian and her team at Sharks4Kids achieve their important mission! Sharks are an integral part of our oceans as apex predators; when shark populations start to disappear, this causes a chain effect that results in dwindling populations of other species in our oceans as well. The health of the planet requires that sharks exist and the more we understand them, the more we can respect and protect them. Knowledge is power and when it comes to sharks there is a lot of misinformation and fear. By dispelling misinformation at an early age, Jillian and Sharks4Kids is actively creating a new generation of shark advocates that will impact these animals, the ocean, and our environment as a whole for the future.
The goal of Sharks4Kids is to create a new generation of shark advocates through access to a dynamic range of educational materials. Curriculum, games and activities allow teachers to integrate shark education into their science programs on an introductory, intermediate or advanced level. Students can access games, activities and info sheets to satisfy their own curiosity about sharks. Photos and videos from scientists and conservationists bring an exciting element into the classroom and show students the beauty of the ocean.
Jillian is a Marine Biologist, NAUI scuba instructor, and talented free-diver; she was also named Scuba Diving Magazine's Sea Hero in the July 2016 edition! She began thinking about setting up educational resources about sharks in 2008 after writing shark curriculum and doing presentations on sharks for friends and in local schools. In 2012, her non-profit Sharks4Kids was born and the website was launched in 2013 with valuable free resources that educators and the public could access.
Since then, Sharks4Kids has evolved tremendously with onsite presentations about sharks in 11 countries and 15 states in the USA as well as reaching out to classrooms via Skype and Google Hangouts in over 40 countries and 47 US states connecting to over 75 000 students worldwide!
Outside of the classroom, Sharks4Kids is leading shark tagging expeditions one of which I will be joining in August 2019 to experience and learn more about the Great White Sharks off of Isla Guadalupe.
Last year's trip video:
If you would like to get involved with Sharks4Kids, donate, or learn more please visit: