Inside Our Alliance: Keeping Coral Reefs Healthy with 10% for the Ocean

vibrant coral reef scene Credit: Kellon Spencer

Did you know ocean conservation projects are only supported by 1% of the world’s philanthropic funding? It’s a fact that our partner, 10% for the Ocean, is working to change as they proudly aid some of the planet’s most pressing ocean-related missions and help us keep coral reefs healthy.

Across the globe, 10% for the Ocean is working with 56 organizations from 15 different countries to support projects that improve overall ocean health. We’ve partnered with them since 2020 and are grateful to receive their financial support to protect coral reef ecosystems.

We had a chance to chat with Aparna Sood, the project manager for 10% for the Ocean, to learn more about the institution’s passion for saving the world’s coral reefs. Here’s what she had to say: 

The Story Behind 10% for the Ocean’s Mission

Q: Tell me about the mission behind 10% for the Ocean.

A: Our ultimate aspiration is to deliver a superfund that addresses the crisis in ocean funding; an all ocean cause agnostic fund which will accelerate a low-carbon future, providing food security, supporting livelihoods, and enabling sustainable ocean economies to thrive. We will market the plight of the ocean and promote our solution for everyday people and businesses to drive a “blue recovery.” Advertising the scale of the ocean’s need is the only way to drive in vast sums of money and enable the harnessing of both consumer, corporate, state, and foundation money. This coordinated fundraising has the potential to multiply the amount of money available for the cause that we care about so deeply.

Q: Why does the organization choose to fund ocean-related causes, such as coral reef conservation?

A: The organizations are chosen if their projects are aligned with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 14 (Life Under Water). We’ll consider funding an organization working toward this goal and if its projects fall under education, research, infrastructure, or legal advocacy. We support a wide range of causes like overfishing, pollution, acidification, marine protected area protection, and coral reef conservation. 

Dendronephthya soft coral in the red sea. Credit: Kellon Spencer

Our Partnership with 10% for the Ocean

Q: What about CORAL’s programs resonated with 10% for the Ocean? 

A: CORAL’s programs benefit local communities through healthy fisheries and protect coral reefs from pollution and the effects of climate change. Coral reefs harbor over 25% of marine species and are key to sustainable biodiversity. It’s a long journey, but it will have a huge impact on ocean health. 10% for the Ocean is proud to share CORAL’s vision to make a difference in the ocean world. 

Making an Impact: Increasing Support for Marine Conservation

Q: How can we encourage individuals and organizations to care about the ocean’s most vital ecosystems? 

A: To empower people and businesses to bring the ocean to the forefront of consumer behavior and national mandates, we first need to share the need for ocean conservation.

Q: What does 10% for the Ocean hope for, in terms of coral reef health and the future of our ocean?

A: 10% for the Ocean hopes to progress toward its vision of shifting the needle of philanthropic funding towards the ocean from less than 1% to 10% by 2030. A hugely ambitious, yet absolutely essential goal. 

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