The Samoa and Tonga Sevens teams have been raising awareness for shark conservation with the Hong Kong Shark Foundation (HKSF), Hong Kong Rugby Union (HKRU) and Tuen Mun Sharks Mini rugby club. They joined forces to share the plight of sharks during the Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens in April 2017.
The teams held a joint training session, with local media in attendance, to promote Pacific nations respect for the environment and the importance of sharks in the cultural heritage of Pacific islands. The Executive Director of the Hong Kong Shark Foundation taught the young rugby club players about shark conservation after the training session. With over 100 million sharks being killed each year, primarily for their fins, and a large proportion of those fins being traded through Hong Kong, the foundation plays an important role in conservation.
The Rugby Union further supported the event by providing space on their message screen for the foundation to promote their vital work during the tournament. The messages played when the Samoan and Tongan teams played during the competition.
Representatives of the foundation also briefed a group of Student Ambassadors, who managed a student program held as part of the event. The ambassadors delivered information about shark conservation to more than 8,000 students who attended.