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The Save Our Seas Foundation is committed to protecting our oceans by funding research, education, awareness and conservation projects focusing on the major threats to the marine environment. Learn about the five threats, discover what we are doing, and find out how you can help.
From a small not-for-profit organisation funding just five projects, in less than 10 years, the Save Our Seas Foundation (SOSF) has grown to become a major player in the fight to save the world’s oceans and the wealth of marine life they contain. While SOSF itself is not a research institute, its generous contributions of both financial, practical and scientific support have, to date, facilitated over 150 marine research and conservation projects around the world.Read more →
An important focus has been on understanding and protecting the largest shark species; not only do these top predators play a vital role in maintaining the balance of marine ecosystems, but the population collapse of many sharks has been the most severe of any group of marine animals. These iconic species are also of immense public interest and so serve to promote public understanding of the ongoing wholesale destruction of both fragile marine habitats and the fish stocks they support.
There have been some extraordinary discoveries along the way, and a wealth of knowledge gained and shared, with both scientists and the wider public, about the charismatic marine creatures concerned, and their role in the oceans. In addition, the passion and commitment of individual project leaders has been outstanding, and has translated into a mission to tell their story to as wide an audience as possible.
Their role in raising awareness of vital conservation issues has been supported by the award-winning SOSF HD footage and excellent photography, recording amazing animals and fascinating behaviours – often in hard-to-access locations or little explored environments – so that other people can see and experience the wonder for themselves. Linked to all this has been an innovative programme to educate children – future consumers and policymakers – about the nature and importance of our oceans, and the very real threats to our marine ecosystems. Only if both future as well as present stakeholders understand and care about these issues can they play a part in preserving the ocean’s fragile health.Hide this section ←
REACH is SOSF’s multi-faceted approach which ensures that the projects we are funding have a positive impact across a wide audience.Read more →
Research is the cornerstone to this – our scientists work in collaboration with one another to enhance and broaden their knowledge – the more we understand about the oceans and the threats facing them, the better able we will be to protect them.
Education is vital to long-term success – by inspiring young people to fall in love with, to respect and learn to act in a more responsible manner towards the ocean, we create the guardians of the future.
Awareness campaigns inform the general public about the threats to the oceans – the more people know about the crucial issues, the greater the likelihood that they will want to be part of the solution.
Conservation is the ultimate aim – whether it’s saving a species from extinction or preserving a vital habitat, our goal is to return the oceans to their once healthy, abundant state.
Holistic implementation is at the heart of all our programmes – just as the oceans form one interconnected system, by integrating our research with our education, awareness and conservation projects, we are both more effective and efficient in everything that we do: the whole really is greater than the sum of the parts.
What we do
The oceans are in trouble. We are at a crossroads in history, and the actions we take – or fail to take – in the next decade will decisively impact the future of our seas and of our planet. Since 2003, the Save Our Seas Foundation has sponsored more than 150 projects in 42 countries in the areas of Research, Education, Awareness and Conservation.
The SOSF Team
Our team consists of a passionate group of people who are dedicated to marine conservation. Our core operations are handled by a small team located in various offices around the world. Besides these we also have a group of senior advisors and ambassadors who support our cause; a science and conservation panel who drive strategy in these areas and a media and public relations panel.Read more →
Save Our Seas Foundation
Executive Director Michael Scholl
Scientific Advisory Team Sarah Fowler (principal scientist) and Dr. Mark Meekan
Principal Media and Conservation Advisor Thomas Peschak
Mobulidae Projects Coordinator and Advisor Guy Stevens
Media Team Thomas Peschak, Christopher Neff and Stefan Κubicki
Web Officer Stefan Κubicki
Film Producer Caroline Brett
Save Our Seas Shark Centre, South Africa
Manager Heidi Thörmählen
Communications Officer Kim von Brandis
Education Team Paul Millar and Ntombizanele Mayiya
Save Our Seas Foundation (US) Shark Research Center, Fort Lauderdale
Director Richard E. Dodge
Director Mahmood S. Shivji
Professor Eugenie Clark Director Emerita, Mote Marine Laboratory, Florida, USA | Professor Emerita, Department of Biology, University of Maryland, USA
Dr Richard E Dodge Dean, Oceanographic Center, Nova Southeastern University, Florida, USA
Dr Sylvia Earle Founder, Mission Blue | Former Chief Scientist, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (USA) | National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence, Washington, DC, USA
Carl Gustaf Lundin Director, IUCN Global Marine and Polar Programme, IUCN Headquarters, Gland, Switzerland
Martha Holmes producer and writer
Science and Conservation Advisory Panel
Dr Barry Bruce CSIRO Division of Marine Research, Tasmania, Australia
Dr Juerg Brunnschweiler ETH Zurich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology), Zurich, Switzerland
Dr Robert E Hueter Director, Center for Shark Research, Mote Marine Laboratory, Florida, USA
Dr Rupert Ormond Co-Director, Marine Conservation International (MCI) | Corresponding Secretary, International Society for Reef Studies (ISRS), Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, Scotland
Dr Nicolas J Pilcher Co-Chair, IUCN SSC Marine Turtle Specialist Group | Technical Advisor, CMS-UNEP Dugong MoU | Founder and Executive Director, Marine Research Foundation (MRF), Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
Professor Callum M Roberts Professor of Marine Conservation, Environment Department, University of York, UK
Dr David Rowat Chairman, Marine Conservation Society Seychelles (MCSS), Victoria, Mahe, Seychelles
Dr Robert Rubin Director, Pacific Manta Research Group, Department of Biology, Santa Rosa Jr. College, California, USA
Professor Mahmood S. Shivji Director, Save Our Seas Shark Center USA (SOS SC) | Director, Guy Harvey Research Institute (GHRI) | Professor, Oceanographic Center, Nova Southeastern University, Dania Beach, Florida, USA
Professor David Sims Deputy Director, Marine Biological Association of the UK, Plymouth, UK | The National Oceanography Centre, University of Southampton, UKHide this section ←
SOSF is an international organisation with projects around the world. We have a few small administration offices in key places but the real work happens in the field with the project leaders we support.
Save Our Seas Foundation Headquarters in Switzerland:
Rue Philippe Plantamour 20, CH-1201 Geneva, Switzerland (Office)
Rue François-Bellot 6, CH-1206 Geneva, Switzerland
Save Our Seas Shark Centre – South Africa:
28 Main Rd, Kalk Bay, Cape Town, South Africa
Save Our Seas Shark Centre – USA:
Oceanographic Center, Nova Southeastern University, Dania Beach, Florida, USA
Save Our Seas D’Arros Research Centre – Seychelles:
D’Arros Island, Amirante Island Group, Outer Islands, Seychelles
Working with others
The challenges we’re facing are immense. We’re just one organisation among many trying to do valuable work in preserving the health of our oceans. Wherever possible we try to work with other organisations whose interests align with ours.Read more →
Shark Alliance A coalition of organisations dedicated to restoring and conserving shark populations by improving shark conservation policies.
Marine Conservation Society, UK Working on various projects in the UK including the Cool Seas Roadshow.
Zoological Society London The EDGE of Existence programme is the only global conservation initiative to focus specifically on threatened species that represent a significant amount of unique evolutionary history.
Arkive Creating the ultimate multimedia guide to the world's endangered species.
International League of Conservation Photographers Furthering environmental and cultural conservation through ethical photography. Our Chief Photographer, Thomas P. Peschak is an iLCP fellow.
Shark Trust, UK Advancing the conservation of sharks through science, education, influence and action.
Wildscreen Film Festival A biennial festival which aims to celebrate, applaud and encourage excellence, and responsibility, in wildlife and environmental filmmaking - films which increase the global viewing public's understanding of the natural world, and the need to conserve it.
Jackson Hole Film Festival A biennial 6-day conference well-known as the most prestigious media event of the year devoted to nature conservation.
Wavescapes Surf Film Festival A unique surf film festival in South Africa with a strong conservation focus.
Cape Eleuthera Institute An island hub in the Bahamas for exploration, primary research, and information exchange focusing on conservation initiatives and economic prosperity at local, regional, and global scales.
Act in Kind Encouraging brands to give a percentage of their profits back to communities and conservation projects.
Shark Truth A passionate group of individuals in Canada with a mission is to help sharks by Stopping the Soup. One bowl at a time.
Sea Life London Aquarium Bringing the conservation message into Aquariums is a crucial part of our awareness campaigns.Hide this section ←
We are always excited to hear about marine conservation and environmental education projects being undertaken or planned around the world. If you have a project or an idea which falls within one of the Foundation’s priority areas for action you may be eligible for a grant to assist in the work. Grants may be awarded for research projects, conservation actions, public awareness initiatives or environmental education activities. A high proportion of grants are awarded for projects focussed on threatened species of sharks and rays, but those concerned with other internationally important marine species, habitats or locations, may also be supported, as may imaginative marine public awareness and environmental projects of a more general nature.
As all our administration and running costs are already covered by a private fund, any money we receive from public donations goes directly to the amazing individuals and projects we support. Please visit our donate page for more information.
For general organisation, administrative and funding related enquiries, as well as any other questions about the marine environment, please use our contact form. For footage library requests please see our footage library page.
The Save Our Seas Foundation is a registered international not-for-profit foundation in Switzerland (Reg No: 081.351.201). Save Our Seas Foundation (US) Inc. is a registered US nonprofit, tax-exempt corporation under Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.