Lives of Shark Spotters

More than keeping water-users safe, Shark Spotters has helped elevate the lives of people struggling in previously disadvantaged communities, including the sprawling plains of shacks found along parts of False Bay’s coast. Hardship, poverty and crime are a daily part of life in these communities; earlier this year, one of the Shark Spotters was murdered while off duty in his community.

Monwabisi Sikweyiya – or Monwa, as everyone calls him – was the first spotter to take up a post watching for sharks.

‘Shark Spotters has changed me completely,’ says, Sikweyiya.

he says, pausing. ‘Respecting life, the ocean, nature. Educated me more. Because if you don’t have respect, in most cases you don’t have the knowledge.’ After joining the programme he says his life transformed for the good. This kind of turnaround is not easily won, but Shark Spotters is successfully changing the lives and perceptions of not only their employees, but also the people they protect.