Introducing the Ocean Health Youth Council


SOA Blog

Sustainable Ocean Alliance is accelerating ocean solutions around the world. Here are their stories.

Empowering the Next Generation of Ocean Leaders

In May 2021, SOA's founder and CEO Daniela Fernandez announced a brand-new collaboration between Friends of Ocean Action (FOA) and Sustainable Ocean Alliance (SOA): The Ocean Health Youth Council. The OHYC is an intergenerational mentorship program that connects ocean-focused youth with expert Mentors from FOA's Council. Mentors exchange and collaborate with youth participants while they tap into the resources and networks of both organizations to propel joint ocean action projects. 

These mentorship pairings empower youth who care deeply about ocean sustainability and restoration to acquire the skills to communicate with and inspire key decision-makers in the ocean space. Reciprocally, the OHYC creates an entry point for youth to contribute fresh their perspectives to global ocean policy conversations, thus drawing an important connection between this diverse network of young stakeholders and relevant policy, science and business conversations.

The first cohort of the OHYC convened in 2021, and the second cohort has just been selected. 

White text_OHYC Cohort 1_10322Mailchimp headers

Reflections from Ocean Health Youth Council participants

“I cannot recommend this program highly enough. It has been so much fun to be able to connect with my mentee—and this is definitely a two-way mentoring. We have a lot of overlap in the work that we do but there’s also areas of growth for both of us.”

—Melissa Garvey (Mentor)

"It was both an eye-opening experience and an honor to engage first-hand with my mentor, Jim Leape. The insights I got from his wealth of knowledge and experience were invaluable, and something that I am really grateful for."

—Rocky Guzman (Mentee)

"My Ocean Health Youth Council mentorship with Helen Agren has helped us build incredible projects together to advance our mutual goals. Together, Helen and I hosted a webinar that educated European youth on the ocean-climate connection and mobilized them to call for ambitious ocean and climate action ahead of COP 26. Through our partnership, we were able to multiply the impact and reach of our work."

—Mark Haver (Mentee)

Watch the webinar organized by Mark and Helen: A Bluer, Better Europe: Integrating the Ocean into EU Climate Action.



Other Articles

Show All

SOA Youth Making Waves in Ocean Policy

“Our house is on fire.” Fridays for Future. The Sunrise Movement. The Global Climate Strikes of...

Why Youth Will Shape Our Ocean's Future

The Sustainable Ocean Alliance's Youth Policy Advisory Council has just announced their Global Blue...

The Ocean, what unites the Youth: a 2022 UNOC Side Event

Register here to attend this event on Zoom.