Ulovane Update: Trainers Blog

20 Dec

Ulovane Update: There is Always Hope

It is Christmas time – A time filled with love, peace, laughter, family and HOPE.

HOPE for planet earth, HOPE for mother nature, HOPE for the oceans and HOPE for us humans as a species.

Every day we hear and see so many negative things. We hear about climate change. We hear about rhinos and elephants and many more animals being poached and killed for no reason at all. We hear about plastic islands in the world’s oceans which are so big that they can be seen from space. We hear about oil spills killing thousands of marine creatures and over-fishing and whale hunting and shark-fin soup and world hunger and deforestations and people dying of hunger and droughts and many more.

So, why not try and find the good things out there? Why not try and find HOPE?

Yes, you have guessed it – I have decided to choose HOPE for our topic which will end of the year.

New HOPE SPOTS for the ocean have recently been introduced

It’s easy to lose sight of good news amid the barrage of negative stories about the threats facing the ocean—everything from growing plastic pollution to dying coral reefs. However, there is a lot to celebrate when you look more closely at ocean-related developments.

 Hope Spots are places that are critical to the health of the ocean. These are areas that in many ways represent all the amazing things we have in the ocean. This is a great opportunity to really cherish these areas and make sure we take care of them for the next generation. It is a global initiative of the Sylvia Earle Alliance “Mission Blue” and IUCN, with the aim to scale up the marine protection necessary for sustainable development of the ocean.

“What we’ve done here is identify a number of critical areas that represent a real hope to restore the health of our imperilled ocean,” says Sylvia Earle. “The pristine seas, the World Heritage areas, marine sanctuaries, marine protected areas, reserves – whatever they’re called. We started at 19, now the number is 50 but for me, there really is just one Hope Spot – it’s the ocean.”

“The ocean as a system, our life-support system, is in trouble and whatever we can do, whether it’s in our community, state or country, region, or in the high seas, we should really respect what the ocean gives us,” says Sylvia Earle. “Not what we can take out of the ocean in terms of pounds of fish, minerals, oil or gas or the fact that we can use the ocean as a dumpsite. What we extract from the ocean that’s most meaningful is our existence. Our job should be to return this favour and keep the ocean alive.”

Over the past few years, the ocean has been rising rapidly on the international agenda, powered by the recognition that we need a major change to secure ocean health as a basis for generating ocean wealth (in other words, sustainable development). People are increasingly realizing that the ocean is essential to life on this planet, providing oxygen and food, controlling the weather, absorbing excess carbon emissions and supporting entire industries and millions of jobs.

Now, governments and industries are joining forces for ocean solutions. New approaches to the ocean are allowing production and protection to operate together.

Cleaning up pollution in Bali.

Here are just a few recent positive developments:

  1. Indonesian Government and Partners Tackle Plastic Pollution

The Indonesian government, which in 2017 pledged $1 billion a year to reduce marine debris 70 per cent by 2025, recently teamed up with the Global Plastic Action Partnership (GPAP) to take an innovative and data-driven approach to solving the ocean plastic crisis.

  1. Electric Ferries Help Decarbonize Maritime Transport

The operators of Norway’s first all-electric ferry, the Ampere, reported impressive statistics after two years of operations. The all-electric ferry cut carbon dioxide emissions by 95% and reduced operating costs by 80% compared to traditional diesel-powered ferries.

  1. A Turning Point for Africa in the Fight Against Illegal Fishing

Fishing boat in South Africa.

The Southern African region loses an estimated $500 million per year through illegal fishing. Namibia recently became the seventh signatory to a charter establishing the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Monitoring, Control and Surveillance Coordination Centre.

So, basically, in a nutshell – there is hope for us and planet earth. There are many wonderful people and initiatives out there which are actively trying to do something😊

Mother nature is resourceful, she is resilient, she is bountiful and she is beautiful. Let us all be kind to our blue planet this festive season.


A couple of things to think about this holiday:

  1. Do not accept plastic straws in a restaurant
  2. Take your own travel mug when you go and buy coffee at a garage
  3. Take your own cloth bags to the grocery store
  4. Don’t buy single-use plastics – get a glass bottle for water and re-fill
  5. Make critical choices when it comes to buying meat and dairy- know where your food comes from
  6. Choose only “green fish” in a restaurant – download the SASSI app on your phones
  7. Give of yourself unto others
  8. Smile and be present
  9. Remember the following saying…

 “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift, and that is why it is called the present”.

To end off, I have come across this beautiful Christmas story and I would like to share it with you all…

The Gold Wrapping Paper – An Inspirational Short Christmas Story

“Once upon a time, there was a man who worked very hard just to keep food on the table for his family. This particular year a few days before Christmas, he punished his little five-year-old daughter after learning that she had used up the family’s only roll of expensive gold wrapping paper.

As money was tight, he became even more upset when on Christmas Eve he saw that the child had used all of the expensive gold paper to decorate one shoebox she had put under the Christmas tree. He also was concerned about where she had gotten money to buy what was in the shoebox.

Nevertheless, the next morning the little girl, filled with excitement, brought the gift box to her father and said, “This is for you, Daddy!”

As he opened the box, the father was embarrassed by his earlier overreaction, now regretting how he had punished her.

But when he opened the shoebox, he found it was empty and again his anger flared. “Don’t you know, young lady,” he said harshly, “when you give someone a present, there’s supposed to be something inside the package!”

The little girl looked up at him with sad tears rolling from her eyes and whispered: “Daddy, it’s not empty. I blew kisses into it until it was all full.”

The father was crushed. He fell on his knees and put his arms around his precious little girl. He begged her to forgive him for his unnecessary anger.

An accident took the life of the child only a short time later. It is told that the father kept this little gold box by his bed for all the years of his life. Whenever he was discouraged or faced difficult problems, he would open the box, take out an imaginary kiss, and remember the love of this beautiful child who had put it there.”

In a very real sense, each of us has been given an invisible golden box filled with unconditional love and kisses from our children, family, friends and loved ones. There is no more precious possession anyone could hold.

May you all have a beautiful Christmas and may HOPE be your wish for 2020

Merry Christmas to all😊

With lots of love


 “I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge. That myth is more potent than history. That dreams are more powerful than facts. That hope always triumphs over experience. That laughter is the only cure for grief. And I believe that love is stronger than death.”
― Robert Fulghum.

 “The very least you can do in your life is figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof.”  ― Barbara Kingsolver

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