December 16, 2019

2019 Year in Review – Our Reefs Need Your Help

Dear Friends and Supporters,

Thanks to your help, Reef Check has achieved its goals in education, research and conservation in 2019. We could not have done this work without you!

Our education and citizen science programs have grown worldwide and hundreds of volunteers have worked tirelessly for the protection of reefs from the devastating effects of overfishing, pollution and climate change. While we have seen many negative impacts on our reef ecosystems, we also have some good news to report. Twenty years of Reef Check data showed that corals can now withstand higher temperatures than they could a decade ago, suggesting they are becoming resistant to the effects of rising water temperatures. In California, despite large stretches of the coast still being devastated by the loss of kelp forest, we have also seen local recoveries of kelp forest habitats.

We are very grateful to you for contributing to our successes. Here are a few highlights of what your support made possible in 2019:

♦ We certified over 800 volunteer citizen scientists and 20 Trainers in coral or kelp forest monitoring in 21 countries around the world and here in California;


♦ We completed over 250 coral reef surveys in 17 countries and over 100 surveys of kelp forests and marine protected areas in California;


♦ We conducted seven EcoExpeditions – two in California to the Northern Channel Islands and along the Big Sur coast, and five worldwide to Colombia, Indonesia, Madagascar and the Maldives;


♦ We taught almost 300 middle and high school students in Los Angeles about the oceans and the threats they face through our EMBARC marine biology education program;

♦ We started a partnership with Outward Bound Adventures to provide marine science education and SCUBA diving training to urban youth in Los Angeles County;


♦ A group of dedicated volunteers in central California has started experiments with purple urchins to see what can be done about the loss of kelp forests;

♦ Reef Check Maldives found against expectations that corals are showing some resilience, adaptability and even recovery from a massive die-off in 2016.


All of these efforts will continue into next year and as we look forward to 2020, we need your help to continue Reef Check’s global efforts to educate young people and to conserve the reefs that we all depend on. Please consider ending 2019 with a tax-deductible contribution to Reef Check.

Your generous contributions make our work possible. We wish you a very Happy Holiday season and a peaceful New Year.

Jan Freiwald
Executive Director