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New 2021 PADI AmbassaDivers announced to inspire people everywhere to connect with the ocean

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PADI® announces new AmbassaDivers on the 2021 team. In their unique ways, these individuals are sharing their love for diving, acting to safeguard ocean health and exciting others to pursue their own passions. Together, they are a motivating force in their communities and across the globe, leading and encouraging others to seek adventure and save the ocean.

PADI launched the AmbassaDiver program in 2015 to help amplify the stories of divers who inspire others to love and care for our ocean planet. PADI AmbassaDivers are part of a team committed to elevating diving, bringing awareness to social or environmental issues and encouraging more people to explore, protect and experience the underwater world. PADI welcomes the following individuals to the 2021 AmbassaDiver roster:

Paris Norriss: Paris is an outdoor enthusiast and host of the adventure travel show Guy in Dubai – with scuba diving and freediving playing central roles in his adventures throughout the show. To date, more than 15 million people tune in annually on Amazon Prime, OSN, and inflight entertainment systems on Emirates and British Airways. Originally from the UK, now based out of Dubai, Paris aims to inspire people to discover the world (above and below the surface), and to take action to follow their passions.

Taylor Walston: Originally from California, USA, Taylor now lives on the island of Oahu in Hawaii, where freediving has powerfully changed her life. As a professional photographer and an ambassador with One Ocean Diving, she works to spread awareness about the importance of shark conservation and ocean preservation. In 2020, Taylor encountered more than 10 different species of sharks while exploring the underwater world, and reached a three-minute static breath hold.

Doudou: Doudou is an adventurer, diver, filmmaker and conservationist with more than 1 million followers on social media in China. As a child she was scared of the water, and it wasn’t until she came across diving in 2009 that she actually overcame her fears and discovered the beauty of the sea. Since then, she has become a certified freediver and has launched an incredible career in underwater photography and filmmaking. Doudou is the first female National Geographic Explorer from China, having worked on projects like Planet or Plastic and Extreme China.

Yukie Higashinita: Based in Japan, Yukie became obsessed with the charm of the ocean the very first time she went diving in Guam at the age of 20. Since then, she dives as often as possible, with her favorite experience diving with a massive school of hammerhead sharks off Mikomoto Island. Yukie earned her PADI Rescue Diver certification at the age of 24, and hopes to share the charm of the ocean with as many people as possible.

Miranda Krestovnikoff

Miranda Krestovnikoff: Miranda has been traveling and diving the world for more than 20 years as a TV and radio wildlife presenter for networks like FOX and BBC. When she learned to dive while studying zoology at Bristol University, she had no idea that diving would become such a major part of her career. When she’s not traveling, Miranda is a mother of two and loves diving the chilly waters around the UK. Through her work on and off screen, she hopes to connect people with nature and the need for conservation.

Francisco Delgado: Born and raised in Patagonia, Francisco is a lover of all outdoor sports and has worked in theater, radio and TV throughout his career. After winning the TV show Big Brother in Argentina in 2015, he toured the Riviera Maya and dedicated himself to studying marine conservation. He currently resides in Cozumel, Mexico, with his two children, where he works as a PADI Instructor and an adventure lifestyle social media influencer for brands in Latin America. Francisco’s mission is to introduce younger generations to the underwater world and teach them how to respect and protect it.

Tom Park: Tom is a photographer and filmmaker with a passion for creating underwater films and marketing materials for tourism boards and ocean-focused businesses. His work has been featured in an array of international magazines and galleries. He also regularly works with marine biologists to help safeguard his local Sydney waterways, and volunteers his time to support non-profit ocean-conservation groups. Tom continuously aims to inspire others to protect the ocean, and hopefully experience the underwater world for themselves.

Martyna Skura: Born and raised in Poland, Martyna has spent the last 10 years traveling and working overseas. Thailand is where she found her passion for diving and ocean conservation, and since then she’s become a PADI IDC Staff Instructor and EFR Instructor Trainer. She’s now living in the Maldives, and is working toward becoming a PADI Master Scuba Instructor. Martyna’s mission is to share her love of diving, the beauty of the oceans and the importance of protecting them with others.

Kaoruko Inou: Kaoruko has created a profession of her own: underwater reporter. After graduating from university in Japan in 2010, she has traveled around the world to report on and share her underwater explorations, and has appeared on many popular Japanese TV programs. In 2019, Kaoruko became the first female Japanese certified whale swim guide in the Kingdom of Tonga.

“This esteemed group epitomizes what it means to seek adventure and save the ocean,” says Kristin Valette-Wirth, Chief Brand and Membership Officer for PADI Worldwide. “They are true torchbearers, dedicated to exploring and protecting the underwater world. And we are committed to amplifying these AmbassaDivers’ stories to inspire more people around the globe to deepen their connection with our water planet.”

Learn more about the PADI AmbassaDiver team here.

Follow PADI on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to keep up to date on their ongoing projects, dive adventures and conservation efforts throughout the year.

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Scubaverse UWP Winners Gallery: Christian Horras

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Each month we give the winner of the Scubaverse Underwater Photography competition the opportunity to show off a little more of their work in a gallery. The March winner was Christian Horras and you can see their winning image at the top of this page.


What do you love about diving & underwater photography?

For me it is all about showing the beauty of our world underwater to people that don’t dive and thus can’t see it for themselves. I want to share my own passion for the amazing ecosystem that is so much older than everything we know living on land. As I am from Germany, there are only a few people in my surroundings that have ever seen a coral reef or a shark with their own eyes. It is a big privilege to be able to go diving all over the world and in return it should be our task to arise awareness of this fragile and endangered ecosystem.

What equipment do you use?

I use a Nikon D810 in a Isotta Housing and various lenses, depending on the subject: a Sigma 15mm F2.8 Fisheye, a Nikon 16-35 mm F4 and two Nikon Macro lenses (60mm and 105mm), as well as a WeeFine +13 Diopter. The Fisheye is my main lens, as it allows me to get really close and still cover a big field of view. For lighting I use two Retra Pro Strobes and a Retra Snoot.

Where can our readers see more of your work?

Website: www.christianhorras.com
Instagram: www.instagram.com/christian.horras/


To enter the latest Scubaverse Underwater Photography competition, with a chance to win some great prizes as well as have your own gallery published, head over to the competition page and upload up to 3 images.

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Emperor Divers reaches halfway in Covid Diver Heroes Initiative with fourth award

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Emperor Divers have reached the halfway point with their #coviddiverheroes initiative and are still receiving worthy nominations every day! Here, they recognise their 4th winner, another awesome hero from the diving community with an inspirational story of selflessness through the pandemic. Nominated by David White, Phuong Cao wins a free liveaboard trip in the Maldives when she can finally take some time off, and here is her story:

I, David White, would like to nominate Phuong Cao (36) for her tireless efforts fighting this pandemic. Not satisfied with being a frontline hospitalist in New York she took a second job on the COVID team in Guam to treat patients under even tougher conditions on her weeks off! She continues to commute 7750 miles each way and apply herself to both jobs for three months already and counting. Her energy level has no limits and she’s only happy when those in her care are on the mend. I think she definitely deserves a break! I guess the Maldives would be the best choice for her as I know she has dived with you in the Red Sea already.

Phuong Cao

We have been in touch with Phuong who had this to say: “Wow what a surprise! Thank you for the recognition. Holding my breath until I get back underwater!”

The halfway point is a good chance to remind people that the initiative is still running and the Emperor Divers team would love to hear about more heroes, as there are four more to award in the next 2 months!

Do you know a diver who has been heroic this past year? Emperor know that, worldwide, people have had to step up during this pandemic which has affected so many lives. They want to reward some real heroes with free liveaboard trips in the Red Sea or Maldives.

Luke Atkinson, Emperor’s Red Sea Manager, said: “This initiative is our way of saying ‘thank you’ to all those hundreds of people who have taken a selfless interest in looking after the vulnerable in their community. Examples could include healthworkers, carers or those who have come out of retirement to volunteer locally, but really we know there are many other ways people have been heroic.“

Emperor want to hear from people who know a heroic diver who would love to have a free liveaboard trip to look forward to in the future. People need to nominate a Covid Hero Diver and tell Emperor (in 100 – 200 words) why they deserve a free trip, and whether they would prefer the Red Sea or the Maldives. A multinational panel of Emperor’s most loyal and compassionate staff will judge the entries and pick a winner every 2 weeks for the next 2 months. There are two remaining Red Sea and two more Maldives liveaboards to be earned, so get nominating and give that hero a reward for their amazing work!

Winners will be announced by 14th (Maldives) and 28th (Red Sea) of each month. Final entries for Red Sea by 20th May ‘21 and Maldives 5th June ’21.

Entries, comments and questions should be sent to heroes@emperordivers.com.

Terms & Conditions apply: Please contact heroes@emperordivers.com for details.

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Explore the amazing triangle of Red Sea Reefs - The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone on board the brand new liveaboard Big Blue.  With an option to add on a week at Roots Red Sea before or after. 

Strong currents and deep blue water are the catalysts that bring the pelagic species flocking to these reefs. The reefs themselves provide exquisite homes for a multitude of marine life.  The wafting soft corals are adorned with thousands of colourful fish. The gorgonian fans and hard corals provide magnificent back drops, all being patrolled by the reef’s predatory species.

£1475 per person based on double occupancy.  Soft all inclusive board basis, buffet meals with snacks, tea and coffee always available.  Add a week on at Roots Red Sea Resort before or after the liveaboard for just £725pp.  Flights and transfers are included.  See our brochure linked above for the full itinerary.

This trip will be hosted by The Scuba Place.  Come Dive with Us!

Call 020 3515 9955 or email john@thescubaplace.co.uk

www.thescubaplace.co.uk

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