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New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services

Media Center

DATE: June 25, 2012
CONTACT: Catherine Coletti, DES Coastal Program; 559-0024
Jen Kennedy, Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation, 431-0260

Celebrate National Oceans Month by Volunteering with the Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation

Portsmouth, N.H. – People who want to help keep New Hampshire’s coast clean and safe for people and marine life can volunteer with the Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation this summer.

Earlier this month, President Barack Obama issued a Presidential Proclamation designating June 2012 as National Oceans Month and called upon Americans to take action to protect, conserve, and restore our oceans, coasts, and the Great Lakes.

“Volunteering with the Blue Ocean Society is a perfect way to answer this call to action and celebrate National Oceans Month in June and beyond,” said Steve Couture, DES Coastal Program Manager. The Coastal Program has supported the Blue Ocean Society’s educational and beach cleanup programs through funding since 2004.

The Society’s volunteers choose the level of commitment that best fits their schedules and interests. For instance, volunteers can participate in a monthly beach cleanup or office volunteer night for 1-2 hours at a time, or do something more involved, such as teach people about marine life as a touch tank educator aboard the Thomas Laighton cruise in Portsmouth, or even aboard a whale watch. All opportunities offer the chance to learn more about New Hampshire’s ocean environment while helping the Society fulfill its mission of protecting and preserving it.

Current Volunteer Opportunities:

Beach Cleanups-
The Blue Ocean Society holds monthly beach cleanups at several beaches, and is always looking for help! Learn about cleanup information and dates at

Monofilament Recycling Bins-
Help monitor the bins at various locations around the Seacoast by removing fishing line and filling out a short data sheet throughout the summer and fall.

Volunteer Nights-
Volunteer Nights are always the second Wednesday of the month from 5-7 pm at the Blue Ocean Society office in Portsmouth. Projects have included collating newsletters, organizing merchandise, and helping to make photo note cards. No training is needed, and it's a great way to meet Blue Ocean Society scientists and educators and learn more about what we do, while hanging out with others who care about the marine environment!

Tide Pool/Touch Tank Educator-
The Society is currently looking for help with the touch tank educational program this summer. Minimum commitment of two days per week is preferred. More info and an application is available at

E-mail or call Jen Kennedy for more details on how to get involved with any of these opportunities at  or 431-0260.

Learn about more volunteer opportunities by visiting the Blue Ocean Society Volunteer webpage at:

Read the President’s full Proclamation on National Oceans Month at:

The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services Coastal Program provides funding and staff assistance to towns and cities, and other local and regional groups who protect clean water, restore coastal habitats, and help make communities more resilient to flooding and other natural hazards. The program’s efforts are focused on N.H.'s coastal watershed, an area that encompasses 820 square miles and 42 municipalities. The Coastal Program supports the region’s economy by helping to preserve the environmental health of the coast and Great Bay and Hampton-Seabrook estuaries for fishing and shellfishing, and assisting with the maintenance of our ports, harbors and tidal rivers for commercial and recreational uses.

The Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation is a Portsmouth-based non-profit organization that is celebrating its 10th anniversary as a non-profit organization this year. Its mission is to protect marine mammals in the Gulf of Maine through education, research and conservation. Staff members work on local whale watch and tour boats (including Granite State Whale Watch and Atlantic Fishing & Whale Watching in Rye, NH, Isles of Shoals Steamship Company in Portsmouth, and Newburyport Whale Watch in Newburyport, MA) and use this platform to educate the public on local marine ecosystems and conservation measures. Blue Ocean Society staff and volunteers also conduct monthly beach cleanups and maintain a student internship program, a sightings database of local whales, and a Web site the public can access for updated sightings and conservation information. Volunteer and sponsorship opportunities are available.

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NH Department of Environmental Services | 29 Hazen Drive | PO Box 95 | Concord, NH 03302-0095
(603) 271-3503 | TDD Access: Relay NH 1-800-735-2964 | Hours: M-F, 8am-4pm

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