Two NMSF regional chapters and a national network of friends’ groups support their local sanctuaries.
National Marine Sanctuary Foundation Chapters connect local communities with the local National Marine Sanctuary by raising awareness, supporting programs and initiatives, fundraising and creating unique events and opportunities that seek to engage and educate participants on our mission and cause. They also serve as a local voice and advocate on issues affecting marine sanctuaries.
Launched in 2012, the Hawaii National Marine Sanctuary Foundation (HNMSF) supports the famous Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary, one of the world’s most important whale habitats in the world. Working with local business and community leaders, HNMSF sponsors a variety of events including reef clean-ups and the popular annual ocean count of humpbacks. Working with representatives from six of the eight main islands, they seek to advance the understanding, appreciation and respect for the local sanctuary they support and these national marine parks around across the nation.
The Savannah-based Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary Foundation (GRNMSF) supports the 22-square-mile live-bottom reef and its unique marine habitat. Created in 2015, GRNMSF collaborates with local business, media and other organizations for a variety of activities. Its active calendar includes the popular annual Gray’s Reef Ocean Film Festival, local events and celebrations and “A Fishy Affair: Malicious…but Delicious!” celebrity chef lionfish cook-off. This chapter is active in the community in its advocacy and education of local residents and tourists alike about the responsibility we have to protect marine sanctuaries and the infinite beauty they inhabit, right in our backyards.