Monthly donors are some of Turtle Island’s most dedicated supporters.

This month, one of our monthly donors from Hawaii, Kanara Woodford, shares her passion for the oceans and why she chose Turtle Island.

What are your first memories of the ocean?

I feel like I was born in the ocean.

I was born and raised in Hawaii, growing up across the street from the ocean in Kihei on Maui.

My brother and I were always at the beach, exploring the exposed reef, picking up empty shells, eating seaweed (and a little sand as babies!).

What are your favorite ocean animals?

My favorite ocean creatures are Honu (Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles), Dolphins and Whales.

But it’s not fair to limit my love of the sea creatures to just these amazing animals. I love puffer fish and how they show curiosity and character.

I recall encountering what I think was a baby squid once in hip deep water off Kamaole Beach #1. It was a calm day and I was enjoying the beauty around me when I looked down and saw this little squid, maybe 3 inches long, right next to me. It looked at me, and I reached out with my hand to connect when it squirted a tiny bit of ink and disappeared.

I’ve been fortunate to swim with sea turtles, careful to keep my hands to myself, while sharing eye contact. I’ve swam with Hawaiian Spinner Dolphins in the bays off the Big Island and emerged from those experiences feeling something profound had happened.

There are so many experiences I’ve been fortunate to have with the animals of the ocean!

Why do you support efforts to protect the oceans?

If not now, when? If not me, who?

I feel so strongly about the immediate, pressing need to reverse the damages we’ve done to our greatest resource. It’s almost overwhelming. I pick up trash every time I walk the beach and try not to get angry about how we are mistreating our oceans.

I hope I’m setting an example for those who observe me.

We need to do this now, hoping it’s not too late.

What do you like about Turtle Island?

I receive numerous requests from organizations of all sorts, asking for donations to various causes. Many of them are amazing and helping their particular choice of preservation.

When I first heard of Turtle Island, it felt right to me to support them.

I can’t be more specific…it was an intuitive response and one I’m glad I listened to.

Join Kanara and other caring supporters by becoming a monthly donor today.