This Marine Biologist is working to save the world’s oceans, one kid at a time

For over 15 years, Elaine Leung worked as a marine biologist, specializing in threatened marine mammal species. The work took her all around the world and she witnessed first- hand some of the horrible realities of what is happening to the ocean and all the wildlife that call it home.

“I chose to specialize in studying threatened marine animals, because scientists could provide them a voice that these animals didn’t have. It breaks my heart, that a lot of these species will be gone within 10-15 years. And it could, it could have been different, we could have saved them.”

“You feel so helpless. I can’t imagine living a life where 10-15 years from now, when almost all marine life is wiped off this planet and children to say to me, why did you let things get this bad? Can I really live with myself knowing that I just sat idly by as all these problems are happening around our planet?”

“I was at a period of my life where I felt like I was not fulfilling my purpose in life.
I wasn’t doing what I was meant to do. I want to teach people how to love and protect our oceans. I asked myself: How do I do that? What am I passionate about? What do I want to do with my life? What makes me passionate? I want to make the world a better place.”

Frustrated with the inabilities to influence governments and policy makers, Elaine decided to pivot her career. Based on her belief that children are our hope for the future, she founded Seasmart, a non-profit that delivers engaging education programs to inspire and empower youth to love and protect our oceans. Sea Smart’s programs inspire youth to love and respect our oceans and understand the roles they can play in protecting our planet.

Since inception in 2016, Sea Smart has inspired thousands of young people across Canada – and the world – to foster a love, curiosity and connection with nature. Seasmart has become an environment Canada G7 Task Force national partner in ocean education and launched an Ocean Plastics Education Kit for Canadian students, in partnership with the Government of Canada, Ocean School, Ocean Wise, Students on Ice and WE.

To learn more about Seasmart, visit their website at:

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