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Community Engagement

The California Marine Sanctuary Foundation works with state, federal and NGO partners to provide critical engagement for important stakeholder groups throughout California.  We deliver clear conservation and science outreach and are at the forefront of evaluating and improving educational tools and methods.


Education & Outreach

CMSF has played a key role in education and outreach efforts for California's network of marine protected areas (MPAs) for over a decade.  Working with the Ocean Protection Council (OPC), the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and thousands of local partners, the public has gained greater appreciation for California's coastal resources and the need to protect vulnerable species and natural areas.

With support from RLF, CMSF currently leads a statewide MPA social media campaign and provides leadership to the NGO community in coordinating efforts for greater collaboration and impact.


MPA education and outreach resources are available through the CMSF-hosted California MPAs website.

Monitoring & Evaluation

Through funding from OPC and Resources Legacy Fund, CMSF has led a decade-long effort to install over 400 interpretive signs across the state.  

Now, in partnership with OPC and the MPA Collaborative Network, CMSF is evaluating existing signage effectiveness and assessing future statewide signage needs that will be used to inform the development of new MPA signs.  


These recent efforts build upon our comprehensive OPC-funded study evaluating the state of California's MPA education and outreach tools.

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Public Awareness

CMSF is focused on increasing sea level rise awareness and action.  With funding from OPC, we recently led California's first-ever statewide sea level rise awareness campaign. 


Our outreach efforts received more than 61 million views, far exceeding the project's initial goal of 1 million views. Reactions and impressions from our SLR campaign elements reveal that the public is clearly interested in learning more about the threats and solutions of climate change.

Workshop Facilitation

CMSF partners with scientists, governments, industry, and other NGOs to facilitate online and in-person workshops and meetings.  Past topics have included marine protected areas, water quality management, and the use of plastics in agriculture:

  • West Coast MPAs Information Exchange

  • MPA Ambassadors Training and Meeting

  • South Coast MPA Collaborative Forum

  • North Coast MPA Collaborative Forum - co-led

  • California MPA Technology Workshop

  • San Francisco Ocean Film Festival MPA Panel

  • Cover Crops and Their Benefits: Green House Gas Sequestration and Organic Matter

  • Agricultural Plastic Use

  • Drip Tape Recycling Dialogue

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