At the Ocean Conservation Trust, we put people at the heart of our mission.  That’s why we want to bring together a group of individuals who are passionate about the Ocean to become our Ocean Advocates.

Our Ocean Advocates use their online voices, through social media and beyond, to help people to Think Ocean, and to realise that making some small changes in their daily lives can have a huge positive impact.

Take a look at some of our current Ocean Advocates.

Mariyam Niuma @somewheresalty

Mariyam Niuma (Ni) is an avid traveller, ocean lover and photographer from the Maldives. She has been chasing adventures for as long as she can remember, starting from her annual trips to her family island in Laamu Atoll, Maldives where she spent many hours exploring the beach and the reefs around the islands with her cousins. Her life changed when she learnt to swim in her late 20s and then got into scuba diving, freediving and surfing in her early 30s; activities which are not common for women from a conservative culture like the Maldives. 

She is one of the first (and few) woman surfers from the Maldives and worked as the only woman surf photographer in the country. Ni spends a lot of time slow travelling around the world, sharing her adventures and experiences through her blog and social media. She is also a part of Zero Waste Maldives, a local non-governmental organisation established in the aim of promoting a zero waste low impact lifestyle in the Maldives. Ni hopes to inspire more people to get outside and get active in the water, so that they will also fall in love with the ocean just like she did.

Sudarsha De Silva @EarthlankaYN

Sudarsha De Silva is a well known science and environment reporter from Sri Lanka. He was recognized as the best environment reporter in Sri Lanka by the Ministry of Environment 2009. He is the Chief Editor of Earthlanka News Network, the only online media in Sri Lanka for science and environment reporting. Sudarsha is also known for his social activism which began in 2009 as he initiated the platform for young people in Sri Lanka Earthlanka Youth Network. His youth platform is a key stakeholder for marine and coastal conservation in Sri Lanka. He has held many positions in many international summits related to climate change, biodiversity and media. He is also completed his postgraduate on Development Practitioners in University of Peradeniya Sri Lanka.   

Hannah Whitman @narwhitman

Hannah believes the understanding of our natural world and the threats that it is under should be knowledge accessible to all. Through this belief she formed a high respect for science communication and wanted it to become a part of her future. So she spent a year out of uni and taught herself how to create graphics and animate them in order to create explainer videos about marine science. She has since worked with scientists, promotion teams and a school to create engaging visuals in order to invite a wider audience into the important topics we see in current research. Hannah has created content on topics such as ocean acidification, invasive species, food security and antibiotic resistance and she is loving every second! 

Louise-Océane Delion @twosealions

Louise-Océane is now finishing her degree in Marine Biology & Coastal Ecology at the University of Plymouth, where she has gained a true understanding and appreciation of the functioning of marine ecosystems, the pressures threatening their persistence, and how we can conserve and restore their resilience. Throughout Louise-Océane’s life, she has developed a close relationship with the marine world. Surfing, swimming, diving, free-diving and sailing are some of the activities that have helped her to maintain her physical relationship with the ocean. Each time, spending time in/on/by the water reinforces her sense of interconnection with it.  She will soon be embarking on a journey that will take her around the world, visiting marine restoration projects, understanding, helping, sharing their stories, living following the pace of both the currents and the winds, and going where they will take her. 

Liberty Denman @libertydenmandives

Liberty’s desire to understand and protect the ocean stems from her childhood filled with memories at the beach and being in the ocean, fascinated by everything within it. From there, Liberty grew her particular interest in sharks. As she got older she found SCUBA diving, freediving, surfing and paddle boarding allowed her more access to the marine world. This fascination carried into her academic life, where she is now a final year Marine Biology and Coastal Ecology student at the University of Plymouth. Liberty has also worked with Shark-lab Malta, Marine Dynamics and the Bimini Sharklab in an effort to understand and protect sharks. She hopes to use her scientific background to create research orientated documentaries, showcasing the various threats sharks face and what potential solutions can be implemented.

Henry Simmons @_harry_simmons_

Henry is due to finish his BSc in Marine Biology and Coastal Ecology at the University of Plymouth in June 2021. As part of his BSc, he took the opportunity to take a placement year to explore career interests. He had the privilege to work alongside Dr. Kasper Hancke and a team of researchers at the Norwegian Institute of Water Research (NIVA) in Oslo, on the Frisk Oslofjord project. The project delved into the prospective use of using flying drones (UAVs) mounted with specialised cameras to capture multispectral images of large areas of coastal shallow waters. Henry chose to build a habitat classification tool using these images. He gained first-hand experience of life as a researcher, working full-time in the research institute’s head office. He felt like one of the cogs, part of the mechanism helping to drive novel research forward, as a community; He hopes to work with NIVA again as part of my master’s thesis next year and bring this research across the North Sea to the UK.

Luke & Tyler @thetwobohemians

“The reason why the Ocean means so much to us is because it’s a place to calm ourselves and a place for adventure. We are always in awe of the Ocean and the power it has. We will always be humbled by our experiences with it and will always try our best to protect it.”

Rose Ellis @roseieellis

“The Ocean is vast, beautiful and invaluable – a combination I find incomparably fascinating and worthy.”

Kate on Conservation @kateconservation

“The Ocean is incredibly important to me, as it’s the lifeblood of our planet — producing over half the Earth’s oxygen and regulating the climate; it’s vital that we protect it.”

How does this help the Ocean?

Social media has become a part of our world and a vital tool for conservation too. Working with inspirational Ocean Advocates, we aim to speak to as many different people in as many different places as possible.

We connect people with the Ocean so that they connect with it, learn to love it and want to protect it.

How can you help?

Step 1: Post photos and videos of the Ocean and use the #thinkocean hashtag!

Step 2: If you love the Ocean and are interested in joining our positive people movement, send an email to clare.baranowski@oceanconservationtrust.org to get a conversation started.