During Dutch Caribbean Shark Week, scheduled for June 18th thru 26th, the entire Dutch Kingdom is celebrating sharks! Throughout this week, various educational and interactive activities for young and old are organized in the Netherlands, Bonaire, Curacao, Saba, St. Eustatius, and St. Maarten to increase awareness about the importance of sharks and rays all over the world and especially the Caribbean. On Saba, The Saba Conservation Foundation is organizing Saba’s Shark Week. A comedian that is popular both in the Netherlands and Caribbean Jörgen Raymann is an ambassador of Save Our Sharks, the organization behind Dutch Caribbean Shark Week. During the week, he will be visiting all participating islands. On Thursday and Friday, June 23rd and 24th he will visit Saba.
Along with our regular events on the posted schedule, we will have some events specifically for the children of Saba. All week, Monday June 20th through Friday June 24th, a different children’s shark book will be read on the radio, as part of the “Read With Me” program on Saba Radio, Q93.9 FM. The books will be read following the local news at 6pm, and will be posted on the CYF Saba, Facebook page the following day. We encourage parents to read along with their children in the evening! To finish up the week, on Friday June 24th, we will host a Shark themed “Read With Me!” Pajama Party at the Queen Wilhelmina Library from 6 to 6:45pm.
Dutch Caribbean Shark Week is an event within the Save Our Sharks campaign. This campaign is aimed at addressing the issue of declining shark populations around the Dutch Caribbean islands by conducting scientific research, communicating with politicians and fishermen, and educating the public, both locally, and in the Netherlands. Save Our Sharks is made possible by the Dutch Postcode Lottery.
Jörgen Raymann is proud of his role as an ambassador: “ I love the ocean and all of its life within. As a Surinam Dutch man I frequently visit the Caribbean islands, and I feel particularly connected to them. Sharks are not just special animals to see, they are invaluable to the health of the coral reefs. This, in turn, benefits the fishermen, because healthy reefs secure their catches. And sharks are also of a high economic value because divers prefer to dive in places where they can see sharks. The sharks around the island are no threat to the people, but people are not sufficiently aware of this yet. I hope to contribute to better protection of sharks, and if possible, try to improve their image. And not only that, I hope to meet as many islanders as possible!”