For Immediate Release, January 4, 2021

Contact: Todd Steiner, Executive Director,

Global Grant Opportunity Available for Nonprofits Combating Marine Debris

Winning organization to be decided by public votes

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — Turtle Island Restoration Network (TIRN) will offer a second grant opportunity to nonprofit organizations around the world challenged by COVID-19. 

The Marine Debris Prevention & Awareness Grant Contest will award $5,000 to a nonprofit organization conducting research and conservation projects relating to a massive and growing concern for ocean conservation: marine debris. The organization that receives the most public votes will win the grant.

“This opportunity is part of ongoing efforts to support groups that are working to ensure innocent marine wildlife is no longer choking on man made waste,” said Todd Steiner, executive director of Turtle Island Restoration Network.

TIRN, a global ocean conservation nonprofit based in Northern California, created the grant contest program in April to safeguard sea turtle nesting beach programs that were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. In the spring 45 nonprofit organizations applied to be eligible to receive the grant and more than 30,000 individuals from around the world voted for the group they wanted to receive the funds. 

Marine debris (anything man-made, including litter and fishing gear, that has been lost or thrown into the marine environment) injures and kills marine life and poses a threat to human health. Our oceans and waterways are polluted with a wide variety of marine debris ranging from soda cans and plastic bags to derelict fishing gear and abandoned vessels. 

Organizations that receive the funding must conduct projects relating to marine debris prevention and effective solutions and hold a 501(c)3 nonprofit status. Operating budgets must also be $1 million or less annually.

The deadline to apply is set for midnight on Jan. 22. Voting starts on Feb. 1 and ends on Feb. 19. The winner will be announced on Feb. 26. Additional information can be found online

Turtle Island Restoration Network is a leading advocate for the world’s oceans and marine wildlife whose mission is to inspire and mobilize people around the world to protect marine biodiversity and the oceans that sustain all life on Earth.