We are delighted that the fantastic Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation have funded and produced a short new film, highlighting the work of We Are Ocean and reflecting on the importance of Ocean Literacy.
We Are Ocean is a collective of organisations brought together by the shared objective of increasing Ocean Literacy through effective collaboration. Since its creation in 2016, We Are Ocean has brought together organisations from different sectors, with varying skillsets, to get a richness and diversity of solutions and ideas, to accelerate Ocean Literacy and improve Ocean health.
Why is Ocean Literacy important?
It’s the UN Decade of Ocean Science and Sustainable Development. 10 years to overcome 10 challenges for the health of 1 Ocean. For the decade to be a success we need more people to be Ocean Literate.
It’s important we live in a society that understands the importance of the Ocean to humankind. Everyone needs to be able to talk about the Ocean in meaningful ways, so we are all able to make informed and responsible decisions about the Ocean and its resources.
How can more people become Ocean Literate?
The Ocean has been studied for hundreds of years by inspirational scientists who have collected masses of data, but worrying facts and figures is not the way to engage everyone with the Ocean.
We Are Ocean is all about using our emotional connection to the Ocean to support Ocean Literacy. We use enjoyment, love and creativity to help people understand why a healthy Ocean is important for them and to help them act in ways that are positive for the Ocean.
What are We Are Ocean doing differently to engage people?
No single organisation can solve the problems affecting the Ocean. We need to bring together organisations from different sectors, with varying skillsets, to get a richness and diversity of solutions and ideas. We need to break boundaries around normal ways of working.
We are idea-led and hold design hacks. After coming up with a question we want answered, we hand over to a room of inspired people who use their energy to move the project forward. Using a heart-based approach makes sure all aspects of our programme, initiatives and activities are filtered through our emotional connection with the Ocean.
What has We Are Ocean achieved so far?
We Are Ocean has achieved two summits, bringing together hundreds of people to discuss inspiring projects connecting humans to the Ocean and to explore how we can all accelerate Ocean Literacy together.
We have launched WAVES, a brilliant communications toolkit that places emotional connection to the Ocean at its heart. Instead of ‘what’ should be communicated, it focuses on ‘how’ we should communicate.
We installed interactive billboards around the UK during the rainy months, to show the sea is in the sky and bring awareness to the connection that rain is from the Ocean.
We transformed World Oceans Day to be like World Book Day across the globe. It’s all about fun, and children expressing their love for the Ocean. 5,000 schools took part, mainly in the UK, with more schools from around the World taking part digitally.
What’s coming up for We Are Ocean in the future?
We Are Ocean Collective is going to carry on flexibly utilising opportunities that the UN Decade presents us with, whilst never losing our ethos and who we are. We want to bring more people into the network, who like us, love the Ocean. It’s important we change how networks and organisations work together because we can’t have a healthy Ocean unless We Are Ocean and networks like it exist.
Check out the full video and meet some of the fantastic people behind the collective here…