“The mission of this program is to provide kids a unique opportunity to learn more about the marine ecosystem and their role in environmental stewardship. This program would not be possible without the continued support of The Orton Foundation.” – Tom Hackler, President

Screen Shot 2017-03-27 at 12.23.04 PM protects public access, promotes responsible use and preserves the traditions of Masonboro Island, an uninhabited island off the coast of Wilmington County. With help from over 700 volunteers and members, organizes beach clean-ups, turtle monitoring, and island explorations. The organization partners with North Carolina Coastal Reserve to host a single-day program where fifth grade students participate in educational science-based field trip facilitated by Carolina Ocean Studies. The program teaches environmental stewardship and personal accountability as well as how the state’s growing population will impact sensitive marine area. The program has grown from 25 students in 2014 to over 1,600 students in 2016. The program hopes to expand to reach over 2,000 New Hanover County 5th graders in the 2017-2018 school year.

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