Babalwa Matutu | WWF South Africa

Babalwa Matutu



Posted on 01 April 2017
Marine Biologist intern with WWF, Babalwa Matutu works tirelessly to coordinate meetings between stakeholders in the fishing industry as well as small-scale fishers.
© Natasha Prince / WWF-SA
Babalwa Matutu has focused her studies on the impact of marine protected areas on communities and their dependence on marine resources.

A Marine Biologist intern with WWF, Babalwa works tirelessly to coordinate meetings between stakeholders in the fishing industry as well as small-scale fishers. Hers is a field that closely aligns the needs of people with the needs of the environment around them.

What inspired you down this career path?
I wanted to commit my life to a career that would be both morally satisfying and make me proud to be a part of. I studied Social Sciences majoring in Sociology and Anthropology and did my post graduate studies in Maritime Studies.

I feel that there is a gap between social and environmental issues that needs to be bridged. If people have a sense of ownership regarding their environment they’ll have more of a sense of responsibility, and they’d take better care of their environment. I think a holistic approach needs to be applied in bridging the gap.

What are you looking to gain from your internship?
I want to be in the thick of it to learn as much as I can about the marine space and to apply the skills that I’ve learned during my studies. I love participating in various projects and working directly with the Marine Programme.

What issue are you most excited about addressing?
Addressing socio-economic issues and environmental issues in an equally sustainable way. I’d like to see us bridging that gap between social issues and marine conservation efforts. This includes working with coastal communities to encourage conservation awareness and how they can benefit from protecting natural resources.

What role your generation play in creating a better world?
We are the proactive leaders that are making positive, lasting changes. If we accept a sense of responsibility and ownership of our natural world then we ought to make changes that will create a better world for all.

What makes our future so bright?
Definitely having more young people as advocates and champions for nature and our environment.
Marine Biologist intern with WWF, Babalwa Matutu works tirelessly to coordinate meetings between stakeholders in the fishing industry as well as small-scale fishers.
© Natasha Prince / WWF-SA Enlarge