World Turtle Day
Between climate change, oil spills, marine pollution, invasive species, loss of habitat, or overharvesting for consumption, it’s no wonder that turtles and tortoises are believed to be the most endangered vertebrates. They’ve inhabited the planet for more than 200 million years, yet roughly half of all species are currently threatened with extinction. For the past 17 years, May 23 has called attention to their plight in the form of World Turtle Day. Below are a few of the many organizations seeking to save them:
Sea Turtle Conservancy
The Sea Turtle Conservancy’s mission to ensure the survival of sea turtles within the Caribbean, Atlantic, and Pacific through research, education, training, advocacy, and protection of the natural habitats upon which they depend.
“After 13 years as a volunteer and donor, I can report with confidence that this group does not stray from its mission to conserve sea turtle populations in the Atlantic and Caribbean. I have experienced no instances of personal agendas from any of the staff members, as often happens in nonprofit groups. All employees defer to the turtles and are dedicated to the research, advocacy, and education necessary to keep sea turtles on the path to recovery. As both a guide for nesting observation walks on the beach in Florida and as a field station research volunteer in Tortuguero, I feel that I am genuinely helping to save sea turtles from extinction. As a donor, I feel that my money is appreciated and used wisely. This is a truly worthy nonprofit, both of my time and my money. The STC is staffed by dedicated, intelligent, thoughtful people and the volunteer experience has been one of the most important experiences of my life. I hope to be active with them for decades to come.”
Turtle Island Restoration Network
Forest Knolls, Calif.
Through its Sea Turtle Restoration Project, the Turtle Island Restoration Network works to protect and restore endangered sea turtle populations worldwide. It does this in ways that meet the needs of both the turtles and the neighboring local communities, using grassroots action, multimedia campaigns, hands-on conservation, environmental education, and litigation.
“I have supported this organization since its birth. If you have any money to give, Sea Turtle Restoration Project will give you the most bang for your buck. I donate monthly knowing my money is being put to good use. Sea Turtle Restoration Project has a long history of great wins for the sea turtles, the health of the oceans and the planet. It’s easy to be part of this nonprofit and feel like you are making a meaningful contribution to the betterment of the planet. With STRP you will see your donations in action . . . it’s a good feeling.”
Sea Turtle Recovery
West Orange, N.J.
The Sea Turtle Recovery is dedicated to the rehabilitation, preservation, and conservation of sea turtles. In addition to rehabilitating sick or injured sea turtles for their release back to the wild, STR also educates the public on the important ecological role of sea turtles, threats endangering them, and ways to protect their future.
“I have known Brandy and Bill for the past several years. I was a volunteer who worked with them at a seal rescue facility. You could not ask for more dedicated, compassionate, and intelligent individuals. They would do whatever it took to save and rehabilitate an animal in their care. I totally support Sea Turtle Recovery because I trust the people running it. They are the best!”
To learn more about these organization and others doing similar work, please check out GreatNonprofits!