Meeting the Next Generation of Ocean Advocates

One of the most rewarding parts of our sustainability work is engaging with those who matter most: the next generation. 

Members of our sailing and shore team were lucky enough to meet with the “Young Reporters of Arts, Science and Environment” at the Concarneau Marine Station, and took the chance to share their experiences with these future climate advocates about ocean health and marine life. 

Despite the fact that children and young adults today are the least responsible for the ongoing climate issues, they are often the ones who are the most passionate about fighting it and protecting the environment. This was further proven during our recent visits to the Concarneau Marine Station in Brittany, France.

Part of our Legacy Grantee program, the Concarneau Marine Station is the world’s oldest marine biology station still in operation. Established in 1859, the facility is dedicated to advancing marine research and connecting the public to the sea. 

Collaborating closely with the French Ministry of Education, the marine station has put a sound educational program in place to inspire the younger generation to learn about environmental issues and to take action to turn the tide on ocean health. 

Each year, kids who are taking part in the “JRASE – Jeunes reporters des arts, des sciences, et de l’environnement” (Young Reporters of Arts, Science and Environment) program, visit the station and engage in diverse projects, blending scientific research with hands-on workshops and practical sessions out of the classroom and on the beach. 

Despite the challenges presented by COVID over the last year, the program was still a great success with several classes enrolled in the program. Hundreds of students have had the chance to experience marine life and oceanographic research firsthand to understand how they can contribute to protecting the oceans. 

11th Hour Racing Team Sailors Justine Mettraux and Charlie Enright, as well as Sustainability Program Manager Damian Foxall, were excited to join students from two classrooms researching starfish on the beach, and enjoyed a performance of song and dance dedicated to the journey of waves and marine life through the ocean. 

Seeing the children’s eyes shine when declaring their love for marine life was a wonderful reminder of why we are committed to driving change and leaving a positive impact on the environment. With these young ocean advocates getting ready to follow in our footsteps, we’re confident there will be a brighter, more sustainable future for generations to come.