Our team

Wade Naude

Wade Naude

Junior Educator

I come from an under-resourced community in Paarl. I never had much exposure to the ocean growing up because I lived so far away from it. I was the first in my household and the first of my friends to go to a university. When I started my course in marine science at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology, I learned a lot about the ocean. I began to understand the processes in the ocean, the different species found there and their adaptations, and the benefits we as people obtain from the ocean. I also got to do lab work for the first time, such as dissections and experiments related to chemistry and physics. I made sure I exposed myself to the marine environment as much as possible in order to nurture and grow my passion for the ocean. I attended beach clean-ups and volunteered at the Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB).

I recently completed my Diploma in Marine Science and during my time as an intern at the Save Our Seas Foundation Shark Education Centre I realised that education in the marine science field is crucial, especially for communities of colour, where I come from. A lot of people have a misperception when it comes to the ocean. When people hear the word ‘science’, they are completely overwhelmed by it because of the way science is introduced to them. I told myself that maybe if there were ways to simplify the information or make it relatable to communities of colour, it would be easier to connect them or get them interested in learning about the ocean. My main aim is to reconnect these communities to the ocean and nature. I also aim to break the barriers that were created by the apartheid system for these communities, especially through education.

I recently connected my community to nature by creating my own clean-ups along the Berg River that flows through Paarl. My aim with the clean-ups is to create a sense of stewardship in the people from my community. I am also a dancer, mainly Krump, and I used to teach choreography in my community before I moved to the Cape Peninsula. I believe that dance, as well as other forms of art, can be used to share messages, especially about environmental awareness.