When I was about 7 years old I watched a movie from the legendary underwater movie maker and researcher Jacques-Yves Cousteau. The sheer beauty and excitement of the underwater world I found ravishing and exciting. The seed was planted which ultimately led to the founding of Coral Reef Care.

In my mid 20s I visited the Red Sea in Egypt. I quickly learnt that a coral reef is a very fragile and vulnerable ecosystem, easily affected by human activity. In the Red Sea a lot of the reef was being destroyed by increasing tourism, construction sites on the beach, and pollution. There was even graffiti on some brain corals. I felt obligated to do something and Coral Reef Care was founded in 2003. Our first coral conservation projects were launched in Egypt in 2004.

Coral reefs are much more than a pretty environment. They are the nursery grounds as well as the rainforests of the oceans. They have a staggering biodiversity that we haven’t even fully explored yet. They are vital storm breakers and generate income for millions. Our goal is to bring that message across, protect reefs and restore destroyed ones with our coral restoration projects.

World’s reefs face many threats these days. We believe we can change the deterioration of our marine environment. We can easily change our brand of sunscreen and eat less or no fish, we can reduce our (plastic) waste, we can reduce climate change and overpopulation, and we can do much more. Governments should make the right policies but what we do as an individual matters. As Dante Alighieri (1265) wrote: ‘From a small spark may burst a flame’. If we want mankind in general to change its behaviour, we have to start with changing our individual behaviour.

I hope our work gives you inspiration and motivation. We are here for the long term, and we hope you will support us!

Rolf Voorhuis

Photo by Giacomo D’Orlando:right: Rolf Voorhuisleft: Gede Desuta Swijaya from our project in Lipah in East Bali