Celebrating our volunteers in National Volunteer Week 2020
Monday, May 18, 2020
Thanks to all the incredible volunteers that are part of Sea Shepherd. It’s because of you that we’ve been able to achieve some massive wins in the last year.
From information stalls at markets, to crewing on ships, volunteers are an important part of what we do. Each individual conversation, event or direct action creates important change, and the bigger the team, the more impact we can make.
Thanks to our dedicated volunteers, Sea Shepherd conducted 33 direct-action marine conservation campaigns in 2019, making this our most active year ever!
On Australian shores, beach cleanups are a big part of Sea Shepherd’s goal to reduce plastic and other waste from jeopardising our marine life. Because of the support from volunteers, our Marine Debris Campaign team has been able to remove over 3 million pieces of rubbish from Australia’s beaches and waterways!
Here are some reasons why people enjoy being Sea Shepherd volunteers:
"Knowing how important the ocean and it's marine life are to the health of the planet, and also seeing the destruction that we - the human race - are causing, I had to join Sea Shepherd so that I could be a part of direct action marine conservation.
Volunteering with Sea Shepherd means that I am giving my time to make a positive impact by fighting against the four biggest threats that our oceans are facing today - illegal fishing, plastic pollution, threats to endangered and vulnerable species and climate change."
"I am grateful to volunteer alongside other passionate people who are dedicated to the cause as we advocate for marine animals and the importance of the ocean."Tammy Omodei
"When we’re at sea patrolling, no two days are the same. As deckhands, our time is made up of fishing vessel inspections, piracy and fire drills, training, and maintenance/upkeep (since the ships often require a lot of attention). And more often than not, the local marine life will put on a bit of a show. It’s hard work but will be one of the best things you do. You’re constantly learning new skills and leave with some beautiful friendships."
"To work alongside inspiring people every day to ’fight the good fight’—that’s pretty special. "Alex Lund
"When I first became a Sea Shepherd volunteer in 2015, I never expected that I would end up as the Queensland Marine Debris Coordinator or, as my daughter calls me, the 'King of the Trash'. I jumped straight into Sea Shepherd beach cleans, which although intimidating at first turned out to be one of the better decisions I’ve made. Although seeing the environmental progress we make at these cleans is gratifying enough, what really makes the experience is my fellow volunteers. Through these beach cleans I have met so many passionate and kind-hearted volunteers, many of which join me every month for the Gold Coast cleans. Nothing is ever too much for our dedicated Gold Coast team.
I have also had the amazing opportunity to go on three remote cleans during which time I had the pleasure of meeting volunteers from around the country. Two of these cleans were at Djulpan Beach in South East Arnhem Land with the Dhimurru Rangers and the other at the eastern beaches of Moreton Island. The Dhimurru Rangers’ passion for their work and country is something that continues to inspire me in my daily life."
"Being a volunteer and showing my family and friends how we can all contribute and be the change we want to see in the world is what continues to drive me in our fight against marine pollution. The opportunities that Sea Shepherd has given me are out of this world, and I cannot recommend volunteering enough to anyone willing to take on the challenge."Grahame Lloyd
Studies have shown that side effects of volunteering include; greater happiness, more self-confidence and an increased sense of purpose. It can also be a good way to have fun, connect with people in your community and learn about our amazing planet.
"All social change comes from the passion and intervention of individuals or small groups of individuals."Captain Paul Watson