Over 1.8 million nonprofits and charities for donors, volunteers and funders

2019 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Ocean Defenders Alliance

2,786 pageviews

Claim This Nonprofit

More Info

Add to Favorites

Share this Nonprofit

Donate

Volunteering Oportunities

Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Environment, Water, Water Resources, Wetlands Conservation & Management

Mission: Ocean Defenders Alliance works to clean and protect marine ecosystems through documentation, education, and meaningful action. Working with affected communities, we focus primarily on the reduction and removal of man-made debris which poses serious threats to ocean wildlife and habitats.

Results: 2013 was a record breaking year on many fronts for ODA: • ODA conducted 30, daylong debris removal expeditions, primarily within California’s Channel Islands. This number is a new record for us! • ODA removed 33 abandoned traps, more than doubling last year’s record! • ODA recovered 2,190 pounds of trap remnants, breaking our record by more than 200 pounds! • ODA retrieved 1,420 pounds of nets, nearly doubling last year’s record! • We also released 56 animals from certain death, setting another new record! • Though we did not set a record in this category, we are also proud to have reclaimed 3,490 feet of polypropylene line. This line poses an entanglement and drowning risk to surfers, divers, and migrating whales. • Last but not least: ODA representatives gave 31 educational presentations to high schools, middle schools, magnet schools, dive clubs, community groups, and others in 2013. Many of these were in Ventura County, and were supported by local media coverage. This is more than double our previous record!

Target demographics: clean the oceans and save marine wildlife.

Direct beneficiaries per year: We help all marine life (birds, fish, invertebrates, mammals, plants and algae) by removing from the ocean abandoned fishing gear including lines, nets, and traps, as well as all other forms of man-made debris such as plastic, metal, and all types of garbage.

Geographic areas served: Coastal waters

Programs: Ocean Defenders Alliance's mission is to work toward clean, healthy marine ecosystems through documentation, education, technology improvements, and meaningful action. The large majority of this active work is done at sea, from aboard our 50-foot vessel donated by television celebrity Bob Barker and named after him: Mr. Barker's LegaSea. The boat crews are volunteer deckhands, mechanics, divers, and our captain is ODA Founder and President Kurt Lieber. Our team's primary action goal: Remove manmade pollution from the oceans, leaving marine habitat and wildlife in a safe and thriving environment.

Community Stories

113 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Continues to regularly sponsor ocean clean-ups removing fishing gear and other man-made trash at heavily used sites with large amounts of debris.

Glenn R.2

Advisor

Rating: 5

ODA has a unique mission to clean up our coastal waters saving coral, fish and other marine life. What they do is so important to the preservation of our oceans!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

What an awesome non-profit with an excellent mission - to clean up the oceans!!! I volunteer as often as I can for their events.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Phenomenal group of volunteers that are protecting our marine life and precious reefs here in Hawaii. They are also the only group with a permit to keep the reefs at Hanauma Bay clean and free from debris.

Kayci D.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

What a difference ODA is making for our oceans! Thankful for their efforts!

Kristi Staples W.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My brother and sister-in-law both volunteer for this amazing organization. Every time they pull nets or hooks or garbage out of the ocean in Hawaii I give a little cheer from Wisconsin! I love the ocean and sea turtles and snorkeling, and I am so thankful for what ODA does!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This is an amazing non-profit filled with volunteers who are passionate about making sure our oceans are clean and that the sea life there is protected as best they can. They are committed and make sacrifice out of their personal lives to do all they can to perpetuate the beauty and condition of the oceans around us.

Barbara Fuller St C.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have seen several videos of people finding whales dying slowly from fishing nets wrapped around their bodies. People do all they can to cut the nets off and free the whale and it is OBVIOUS that the whales are in joyful gratitude of this help - proving that they are sentient beings. I have seen dead whales with stomachs full of plastic that killed them. You have seen just as many photos of sea animals suffering from human trash. These situations are murder by neglect. It is no different from seeing any living innocent being tortured.
Ocean Defenders Alliance CARES and is doing what they can to clean up this situation. If I weren't old with poor health I would be right there with them. They save my sanity. These are true heroes.

Advisor

Rating: 5

I've been involved with ODA since the beginning (almost 20 years!) and have seen the dedication of the crews to get as much marine debris out of the coastal waters as possible. I think every shoreline needs ODA!

Previous Stories

Advisor

Rating: 5

ODA is undeniably one of the world's top experts in marine debris removal! Their unparalleled expertise in hauling out abandoned fishing gear (along with plastic and other manmade pollution) is invaluable to coastal waters and marine life that are suffering from this hazardously and often deadly debris. If you follow ODA, you will see the most hard-working and passionate volunteers carrying out the organizations mission on behalf of so many people who care about the ocean but just can't get out there on the water to do it themselves! Hooray for ODA!

Read more

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Ocean Defenders Alliance is an extremely important, effective, and inspirational organization. I have been following their work for many years. They have taken an amazing leadership role in identifying and addressing the issues of ghost gear and other trash and debris in the marine environment, and in developing and providing remedial plans of action to address these challenges. With their volunteer base, and fantastic leadership and planning, they are removing huge amounts of garbage, toxic matter, and derelict gear from many ocean locations, helping to save innocent wildlife, and to restore ecosystems. They have also had great success in raising awareness about these deadly problems with many audiences and with students and schools. I greatly admire and support their work. They have had an incredible positive impact on the environment!!!

Previous Stories

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I am very pleased to have this opportunity to review this fantastic and amazing organization and their critically important work. I have known Kurt, and followed his work with ODA, for many years. His dedication, along with everyone else connected with ODA, to removing awful and harmful debris of all kinds from the ocean, including ghost gear, is truly awe inspiring. ODA has been making a tremendous difference in the real world for the health of ocean ecosystems and wildlife. ODA has removed tons of debris from the ocean for many years. Their work has saved countless lives, and helped allow damaged areas to recover. ODA divers face many dangerous challenges as they do their amazing work. It is truly an amazing organization that has made and continues to make a very big impact in a critically important way.

Read more

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The roll Ocean Defenders plays in our environment is of utmost importance for our creatures of the sea, and the polluting of our oceans. Kudos to the team for their hard work and dedication.

Tanya F.1

Donor

Rating: 5

this is one of the few great truly grassroots organizations that does what they say and puts their money where their mouth is! Its no-frills operation means that your $ goes straight to what ODA is all about: clearing dangerous and deadly debris from our oceans to protect our precious sea creatures, and even us humans too! I have had the privilege of seeing first hand some of the volunteer crews in action with Kurt Lieber, the founder, and I have never seen more hard-working and dedicated people!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

ODA has been an integral part of cleaning up the oceans in the Huntington Beach and Channel Islands area of So. Cal for a long time! They are a passionate, skilled and educated group that uses their donations wisely and effectively! Living in HI, I am excited that there are now clean-ups happening here in the islands (Oahu and Big Island). Volunteer if you have the time...you'll be working with a dedicated group of professionals while really making a difference to marine wildlife and ocean health.

Advisor

Rating: 5

The ODA is an incredible organization that is focused on protecting our oceans and all the marine life that lives in it. I’m extremely impressed with the high caliber of all the volunteers who take part in the ODA sponsored cleanup dives each month here in Hawaii. The local efforts are paying off as hundreds of pounds of debris are removed each month from our ocean. I’m super proud to be associated with the ODA.

Dennis B.3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I add been shore diving with some of the ODA volunteers for quite some time. We always brought our game bags with us to collect any trash we would find. I was invited to come along to help remove abandoned lobster traps and met Kurt and his crew. I was hooked, this was a great group of volunteers who were doing something to help clean up the ocean and save animals from being trapped or caught in the lines left behind. I do hope more people will join ODA and give some of their time or donations to this wonderful cause.
Signed Bluesteal OML & ODA diver

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I researched all the marine-oriented non-profits working to make the oceans better, and Ocean Defenders Alliance stood out above all the others. A great group of people go out and work hard to remove traps hazardous to marine wildlife from the ocean with little to no fanfare. Everything is volunteer based, so 100% of the effort goes to supporting their mission. The more time I spend with Kurt and his team on the water, the more impressed I am with the results, and am now proud to call myself part of the ODA volunteer team

1 Taylor S.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

ODA is the absolute best. The people are so kind and just care about protecting ocean life and keeping it clean. They are professional and concomitant and over all on top of it. The clean up dives are a privileged to be a part of. NO ONE BETTER

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Fantastic people doing amazing work. ODA is making a real difference in our oceans.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I had an absolutely wonderful experience with Ocean Defenders Alliance! I went out with them off of Kona, Hawaii. We ended up spending over an hour diving the harbor pulling up tires, wires, saws, carpet patches, you name it! Their enthusiasm every time we brought something new up off of the bottom was infectious! They were right there with us helping to haul the big stuff on to the boat. I can’t wait to go out with Kurt and ODA again!

Advisor

Rating: 5

Our organization has been working with Ocean Defenders Alliance and their founder Kurt Lieber for many years. They do outstanding work and are true heroes of our marine environment. We look forward to working together for many more years as we try to make our planet a better place.

Respectfully,
Ray Hollowell
Founder-Sea Inspiration