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Ocean Blue Project

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Environment, Environmental Beautification, Youth Community Service Clubs, Youth Development Programs

Mission: As a grassroots, environmental 501c3 nonprofit, our mission is to rehabilitate and conserve the world’s Ocean, beaches, and rivers through recovery of plastics from ocean, beach and river clean ups, solutions to keep pollutants from entering ecosystems, collaborative community-driven service learning projects, and youth education.

Results: Ocean Blue got started because of the amount of litter removed from the first beach cleanup we did in 2012. College students from Oregon State University wanted to do more cleanups and their goal was to do 30 cleanups every year. The one thing holding everyone back was that we needed permits, and if we became a nonprofit organization then we wouldn't have to pay for permits and would be able to provide liability insurance. What began as a hobby to steward Oregon beaches became a national nonprofit working with over 5,800 volunteers to address ocean health through cleanups and by protecting stream water quality for streams and rivers that flow to the ocean. Today, these activities are all integrated with community engagement and youth education. Together we have removed over 235,000 pounds of marine debris and microplastics with a goal to remove 1 million pounds by 2025. We have also planted 9,900 native shrubs and trees for streams with a goal to plant 50,000 by 2025.

Target demographics: see our one world Ocean, beaches and rivers be once again healthy and naturally beautiful ecosystems where wildlife, plants and humans can thrive alongside one another.

Direct beneficiaries per year: Engaging over 5,000 volunteers annually to remove over 235,000 pounds of debris in 2018 alone.

Geographic areas served: Oregon, Washington, California, Florida, Texas, New York, New Hampshire

Programs: Microplastics Recovery—removal of plastics and other debris from beaches in partnership with university researchers and upcycling manufacturers. Create a Cleanup -- empowering individuals, schools, and businesses to develop local cleanup events around the United States. River Restoration Projects-- preventing ocean pollution through riparian ecosystem enhancement projects that allow local flora and fauna to thrive while addressing pollution at its source, our urban streams and rivers. Blue Schools—grade-school curriculum to help students become stewards of their local watershed integrating urban stream/river restoration by planting native trees and vegetation.

Community Stories

51 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2 Ana Myriam M.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project is an incredible organization. From environmental education to actually cleaning up our oceans, their work is inspiring and very much needed. I've been volunteering with them for over a year and I'm so happy I get to be a small part of the big things they're doing. Thank you, OBP for reminding me that there are good people out there who care about our environment and who are willing to do the work to protect it.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project is an incredible organization doing even more important work! Their commitment to helping the environment is inspiring countless others towards action. It was a pleasure to work with them and be a part of their hard-working, talented, and passionate team.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It was a great experience working with Ocean Blue Project. They are clearly a well-run group that has legitimate and consistent commitment to their mission. I look forward to seeing their success continue in the coming years!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue really cares about how we leave our planet for those who live here with us, and those who will live here after we are gone. They are great educators, and I appreciate all of their efforts with Volunteers, like myself.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project is am amazing program! I work for Garden First Cannabis and we're always looking for new and fulfilling ways to give back to the planet and out communities and Ocean Blue has definitely given us a easy and fun way to do that.
Thank you Ocean Blue for all the positivity and hard work, I admire your mission and look forward to continuing working with you and helping hit the goal of removing one million pounds of plastic from our Oceans by 2025

1 JeremyKuhles

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project is all about action at a time when proactivity is more important than ever. Tackling the climate crisis can seem daunting and insurmountable and leave many (including myself) dazed, confused, and directionless. The team at Ocean Blue Project has the skills to motivate and galvanize a team to act positively and affirmatively. I am just starting my journey with the organization, but already, I am buoyed with the hope that together, we can make a difference. The world needs the Ocean Blue Project.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project is doing some great work in cleaning up our beaches and waterways. They are a joy to work with and their passion for the ocean is contagious.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Working with Ocean Blue Project is an impeccable experience. It's a great organization working for a most important cause. We collaborated on a number of projects already and I hope there will be many more to come.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project is a wonderful organization. The founder and his team are above and beyond when it comes to their passion which is making the oceans cleaner through hard work and perseverance. I was lucky to coordinate a beach clean-up with them. They were organized, taught us a lot about their cause, and helped coordinate media to help create awareness around the event. I would highly recommend them to anyone looking to coordinate a group clean-up event or to reach out to them for general knowledge on how to get involved to save out oceans.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue is doing a great job getting and keeping our beaches clean for all of us to enjoy.

1 Lyndsey V.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I donated my time helping Ocean Blue Project with their communications and outreach. What I learned is how passionate the Ocean Blue Project team is for the ocean and the world's ecosystems. If they were given extra hours in their day or extra days in their week, they would use that time to do all they can to further their mission to remove plastic pollution from our One World Ocean, beaches and waterways.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is a very useful and timely initiative to help bring awareness to the amount of plastic that is going into our oceans. I volunteered to help bring out the insights using data on plastic production among countries, etc by making an Infographic . Further, the use of plastic bags and straws is affecting marine life and I am sure their voice will be heard by many across countries.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I Have Done ..... Design with Ocean Blue Project.
I think that they are a Fantastic Non-Profit... with serious near future and future goals.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Really great organisation to work with and deliver great projects. Passionate and forward-looking organisers and a great spirit among volunteers, getting great commitment to achieve the goal of plastic reduction, clean beaches and healthy waterways.

1 Agnieszka P.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering with Ocean Blue Project over the past year and they are an amazing organization to work with! I found them through CatchAFire. The communication is excellent and team members are very clear on deliverables. It is an amazing opportunity to help out an organization keeping our oceans clean.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project does an exceptional job in educating our communities about the need to conserve our Earth's waters through providing educational materials, organizing beach cleanups and publishing online content for anyone to read!

I studied plastics in graduate school and understand the detrimental effects they have to our planet. Many of these plastics also contain additives that are harming our environment. I'm grateful to see that Ocean Blue Project is making a difference in tackling the environmental issues our world is facing!

1 Blain N.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Always working to save our planet.Does real hands on work cleaning up and putting out the message that we only have one planet.Fair minded,non political,non aggressive and always gives out a positive message.I am proud to be part of and follow this group of human's that not only talk the talk they follow it with ACTIONS.Brave Ocean Blue and keep up the great work.

1 Tim G.5

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Great people, great organization! Nobody works harder in more places to protect our beaches and ocean!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Years ago, growing up on the Oregon Coast. I noticed some debris that floated in.. Not to much though. Now, it's heartbreaking to see the all the refuse washed up on the shores, and knowing then that there is so much out in the ocean,killing Marine life.. Then last year I started following Ocean Blue and their commitment to clean these beaches and rivers, not just in Oregon, but everywhere around the globe now. My respect for Richard and Karissa Aterbury is immeasurable! I am grateful to the founder of Ocean Blue, their son! Well done young dude! The world is healing with this movement you've started. The Aterburys one and all,are in my opinion, Earth Warriors, heroes and and Guardians of Gaia and all her inhabitants .I love you man!

1 Kim L.6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue is an amazing organization. I have partnered with them on two separate beach clean ups. Passion for the environment and kind hearted staff make them an amazing group to be a part of.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

This is a wonderful organization. They have dedicated so much towards a healthier planet.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have had the pleasure of organizing a couple of beach cleanups through Ocean Blue, and every event has been a pleasure. The wonderful people at OBP are very professional and easy to work with and are obviously dedicated to cleaning our oceans and waterways, they plant trees too, a lot of them!!
If you are ready to help make a difference, I highly suggest you check them out.
I am looking forward to the next event with Ocean Blue Project !!

1 Catherine R.2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This family based organization has shown nothing but passion and love for our planet. Their dedication and passion is inspiring and gives me confidence that there is hope in humanity❤️ Not only do they work diligently to clean our beaches and rivers but they also put the work into properly disposing the waste that has been collected. Our world could use/needs more people like those behind Ocean Blue!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue is beyond lovely and was one of the most incredible cleaning experiences of my life. Their tireless effort to clean up our local PNW beaches has been awe inspiring - and the work they do to pull in local community help and support is nothing short of extraordinary. They are tireless in their approach to preserve our world and I am so thankful to have found them!

Karisa A.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I've been volunteering with Ocean Blue for over five years and it's allowed me to focus my work on giving back to nature every day. There is nothing more rewarding than dedicating myself to an organization that stewards our waterways, takes care of our Ocean, and educates youth about the importance of our natural water resources. I look forward to the next 5 years.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean blue project came to my town, Long Beach, California, and I participated in their beach cleanup. We weren’t just picking up garbage on the beach. I also got an education and micro plastics. I had no idea that these things were even in the sand. It was only after this cleanup that I realized these little tiny plastic pieces are throughout the sand. It really motivated me to educate others and to regularly do my part in cleaning up litter and helping keep the waterways clean.

Previous Stories
2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project came down to Southern California, where I participated in a beach clean-up. I came down to volunteer, expecting I'd just be walking and picking up garbage off the beach. Working with this group was so wonderful. I actually didn't have to walk at all. We were picking up micro plastics -- tiny pieces of plastic that I could just sit in one spot and sift from the sand. I got such an education from this experience. Though I've been a beach-goer my whole life, I'd never seen the tiny "nurdles" (micro plastic balls) in the sand. I saw the macro garbage, which I'd been picking up, but working with this organization made me aware of how much more we need to do in education and stewardship! The organizers were friendly and kind, and it was a family affair with kids in tow.

Jordan B.3

Donor

Rating: 5

I had the opportunity of participating in invasive species removal event with Richard in Albany Oregon. I learned a lot about stream systems in the process. Ocean blue is always doing wonderful things around where I grew up, and it’s something I’ve really grown to appreciate.

Eric S.8

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue was instrumental in producing opportunities to clean, teaching on micro plastic, encouraging words and steadfast hope of clean beach. Thank you for your service to our community. You have made a positive influence in our environment and culture.
May God continue to bless the work of your hands. (Psalm 90).

Jill Benner W.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Does such wonderful work for our ocean, beaches and waterways!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project is dedicated to cleaning our beaches and waterways. Removing toxic debris and planting trees.

Hippie Kellie J.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked with this group since their inception; I can say they are honest and sincere in their concern for the world's ocean and all waterways. I support them in every way that I can and enjoy participating in local beach clean ups, watershed support, planting trees, really any event they are hosting is a good one. Keep up the good work!

Nikolay G.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was hired as an intern to help inform the public of the value and the dangers posed to their watersheds. It was a great learning experience and this work is meaningful. They also utilize scientifically sound solutions to the real issues our community faces.

1 Gina O.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

After spending time with Ocean Blue Project planting trees, I wanted to make sure more people knew what a great group they are. OBP is committed to environmental work that makes a difference for waterways and oceans. They also work hard to engage with the local communities to make sure that their projects have a lasting positive impact.

1 Grace S.1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I adore this non-profit for their passion and continued commitment!

1 Randy L.1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I Am the creator of the very special epic feature film project called, The Secret Lives of Mermaids and Dolphins. Endorsed for inspiring, educating and helping save the lives of dolphins, whales and sharks. Our mission with the help of many oceanic professionals is to entertain global audiences and while doing so inspire a positive change in the minds of all who see our film to help protect our oceans and all marine life. I Have been connected to this wonderful Ocean Blue Project for some time now and have seen all involved with this project Truly putting tremendous effort into everything they do to bring about a positive change and inspire others along the way. The Ocean Blue Project is truly making a difference and helping save our oceans and all marine life. We are honored to be connected to this project.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I am so happy to see people taking care of our beaches and oceans in Oregon. Great for all the creature so who call that home.

1 Jen B.5

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I will never look at the beach the same after being shown what is being washed up and left in the sand. How trees and shrubs being removed are causing so much damage to the landscape. This is an amazing organization that loves to teach others so that the environment has care givers with good habits.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked with Ocean Blue in coordinating beach cleanups on the Oregon Coast and in campaigning for local businesses to Go Strawless.
They are local, passionate and have their steadfast work ethic in the right place. They provide great opportunity for people and communities to get involved with cleaning up our beaches and waterways which is so necessary right now!

1 Derrick E.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My name is Derrick, I am a supporter of ocean blue project, at first I was just watching and observing what was there mission and they are very knowledgeable and kind hearted people who care about the ocean, you have questions they will answer you. If you have ideas to better the ecosystem they are always open to work with college students, I am currently volunteering with ocean blue and it’s been a amazing experience.

1 Cari M.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Our family has known this family for a few years and has had the pleasure of witnessing them grow and flourish in the state of Oregon. Ocean Blue seems to seamlessly navigate the treacherous waters (pun intended) of the environmental non-profit world. They work tirelessly to secure local and state grant funding, promote events in many coastal and inland communities, and partner with key allies. Their events are professionally-run, engaging, and welcoming. We did a beach cleanup in our area and we were really impressed by the integration of a local ciderhouse/brewery. These strategies really maximize the public's interest and brings them into the work in a fun way. The characteristic that really makes Ocean Blue stand apart from the pack is the fact that they are a family unit that welcomes other families into their activism. They are pushing against this neoliberal idea that individuals need to step up to provide and act in the face of retrenching state support. Kids can be a part of the equation. Ocean Blue maintains really dynamic social media that attracts users to watch videos, read relevant research and news, and find out about upcoming events. We are constantly impressed by what Ocean Blue produces.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

For students interested in working with water or other projects associated with conservation and restoration of areas near waterways as well as how nonprofit organizations work, I would recommend this internship site to those students. Richard provided me with a vast amount of information and insights as to how nonprofit organizations operate as well as the common obstacles faced. I also found this nonprofit organization to be an honest one and where the director or other employees are not highly benefitting from the funds received by the organization. Richard initially provided me with a number of projects he was interested in pursuing and placed an emphasis on determining which I also shared a common interest. All of these projects had potential for high local impacts, and it was encouraging that Richard placed a focus on making sure that he not only received an aid in projects, but that I also contained interest. Additionally, I did not experience much work with data entry tasks at this internship site, which I found to be commonplace at other internship sites. I also had a large amount of autonomy, which I found to be beneficial in personal growth. I believe that I received a good learning experience while working with Ocean Blue Project, and I feel that others would feel the same.

1 Clint J.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Ocean blue is a Model for Non Profit charities. the members of this organization are very passionate about clean water and oceans, and they put their money to good use.

they are organized, well connected, and well respected.

keep up the amazing work!

1 Kassius

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Speaking with Richard, I was so impressed by his story and how much good that this man is doing through his nonprofit that not only did I want to pitch in to help but also offered to help him raise money for all of the good Ocean Blue Project is doing for the environment, nature, and kids by donating 4 pieces of artwork. I recently volunteered for an Ocean Blue Project beach cleanup and will continue to do what I can to help Richard reach his admirable goals. Richard is a tremendous positive influence and I stand behind OBP 100%. If you want to get behind a great nonprofit, definitely put this one on your list and donate, as he uses much of his own money to make the world a better place.

2 Nathan30

Advisor

Rating: 5

I've been working with the Ocean Blue Project for several years and I am very impressed by the level of enthusiasm and sincere concern for the project's goals that I have seen. I have seen many, well organized, successful clean up events occur on entirely volunteer involvement. It is clear that Richard sincerely wants to leave this planet a better place for future generations and he welcomes all participants who share those goals. I am often happily surprised by the level of philosophical diversity that I see in the volunteers that show up to these events. Many different people come together, and have a good time cleaning up waterways, planting trees, and learning about the local environment and waterways that they may have never noticed if it weren't for the efforts of the Ocean Blue Project.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I had an opportunity to intern at Ocean Blue Project this summer. I got to learn about map building and making video tours using ArcGIS and Google Earth. I have also gained experience on grant writing and event outreach. Working with Richard, the founder of the Ocean Blue Project, let me understand the concept of every little parts matter. Every stream matters, doesn’t matter how small the stream is, because they will eventually flow into the ocean. If we want to clean the ocean, we have to clean the streams as well. Overall, it was a fun and meaningful experience.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project Inc. began with a dream..a dream to help keep our ocean healthy by helping our rivers and streams stay healthy. I live in Oregon near many bodies of water.. I live near and play in the ocean,lakes, rivers, streams and little creeks. I know the importance of clean water for our habitat, the fish, all animals wild or domestic, the tiniest critters and humans. Ocean Blue Inc. is giving volunteer opportunities for all to participate in for a good cause, while educating adults and children on what is important for our healthy lives. I am so proud of this nonprofit and the work they do.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I had the amazing opportunity to do an internship at OBP as an international student at Oregon State University (OSU) from Brazil. In this internship I could learn about bio retention cells by doing an awareness map of green infrastructure at OSU. I could help in a restoration project grant writing that helped me to improve my writing skills. Finally, I learn to have more confidence, and develop interpersonal relationships by helping with the Annual Willamette River Clean Up, and doing outreach at the Corvallis Farmers Market. I could work with great people that added a lot to my personal and professional life. I just have to say thank you Ocean Blue Project !

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It was amazing that we picked up about 6 bags of wastes include glass bottles, plastic bags, beverage cups and so on along Sequoia Creek. During the event, I learned the value and importance of the work by talking with Richard. Every Volunteer is nice and hard working and I believe the experience is meaningful.

2 Karisa B.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ocean Blue Project has welcomed my 5 year old daughter and me at every event. We have learned more than I expected and am surprised to learn about some of the issues facing urban streams, rivers and world oceans. Most importantly, I am very grateful for Ocean Blue Project's efforts to provide solutions that are essential to sustaining life on this planet and to educate the youngest members of this planet. Our children are the future and I think Ocean Blue Project has a very good understanding of this. I look forward to learning more about how to work with nature to clean up the mess we have created in our waterways.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

We worked with Richard and Rosalie to install mycofiltration bags along a very polluted stretch of a local creek in conjunction with high school students doing riparian planting. Richard and Rosalie are very knowledgeable, brought everything we needed and didn't have and even left us with some mycelium! We had a very dry summer, so we haven't taken water samples yet, but we will after this winter. It was a great project and my Council loves the idea of biofiltration. Thank you Richard, Rosalie and Ocean Blue!
Kelly Miles
Coquille Watershed Association