Imagine our beaches and oceans without dolphins, turtles, fish, and even birds? This could happen if we don’t stop polluting our seas. Researchers have discovered that about 100,000 marine animals die each year from eating or getting caught in plastic. This problem doesn’t just affect our sea creatures, but it also harms our beaches.
Created by kids, SOL’s mission is to prevent pollution on our beaches through organized beach clean-ups and by spreading awareness throughout our community. SOL plans events four times a year and all the events are open to the public. Often times an educational component is included in the event. Students have learned about sea turtles, sharks and Florida’s coral reefs. SOL has hosted a turtle release and a shark tagging excursion. By educating our youth SOL hopes to decrease the amount of trash on our beaches in the future.
SOL is the proud recipient of the Klean It Up Grant and the Guy Harvey Foundation Grant through the Youth Ocean Conservation Team. The Youth Ocean Conservation Team is a global network of youth and adults dedicated to protecting our planet’s marine ecosystems.
SOL, Saving Ocean Life, was founded in 2014 by Joey Goldstein, a tenth grader who lives in Ft. lauderdale, FL. While attending fourth grade Joey learned about the problems facing our oceans and coastlines. She told her parents she needed to do something to help the marine life and to find a way to stop pollution from getting to our beaches. Joey was determined to spread awareness to her community so she organized her first beach clean-up. Now, SOL hosts educational events and beach clean-ups. Hundreds of families have attended these events throughout South Florida over the years. Joey’s hope is that children will learn about the environmental issues and will continue to be conscientious citizens for the rest of their lives.
In 2018, Joey received the Seaworld & Busch Gardens Youth Ocean Environmental Excellence Award. Joey is currently a water challenge ambassador for EarthEcho International, and she is an inspirational speaker who loves to share her knowledge about ocean pollution. When Joey is not cleaning the beach she is riding the waves on her surfboard. She also loves school, swimming, skiing, rock climbing and playing the drums.
SOLmates are students who share a passion for the ocean with Joey and want to take on a more essential role in the organization.
Jordan is a 10th grade student who is passionate about animals and wildlife conservation. He has been an instrumental part of SOL’s operations since 2015. He continues to help SOL’s event planning and management.
Nico Wellons is a recent addition to the team. He specializes in photography and media development for SOL along with other aspects of the organization. He loves showcasing his love of nature and helping the environment through the camera’s lens.