The Sea Rangers Service: Training Young People to Protect the Ocean

The Sea Rangers Service, a social enterprise that aims to train young people to protect the ocean, has made its way to the UK. Founded in the Netherlands in 2016, the organization has now established itself in Port Talbot with the goal of restoring one million hectares of ocean biodiversity by 2040. The initiative also aims to provide maritime career training to 20,000 young individuals, particularly those from coastal regions.

Unlike traditional educational programs, the Sea Rangers Service requires applicants to be between the ages of 18 and 29. Before being selected, candidates undergo a rigorous boot camp led by Royal Navy veterans. This boot camp is designed to evaluate the participants’ teamwork skills and motivation. Successful recruits like Selena share their excitement about the opportunity to work as a Sea Ranger, emphasizing the chance to protect the environment without the need for specific qualifications.

Selena describes her journey of discovering her passion for marine conservation and how she immediately signed up for the Sea Rangers program upon learning about it. Another recruit, Isaac, expresses his family’s surprise and his own delight in finding a genuine interest through the initiative. The hands-on work assigned to Sea Rangers varies from basic tasks like cleaning and food preparation to complex assignments involving environmental monitoring and research. The organization collaborates with government agencies to ensure the efficacy and significance of these activities.

Following its launch in Port Talbot, the Sea Rangers Service aims to extend its reach to other UK locations such as Portsmouth and Grimsby. The founder, Wietse Van Der Werf, envisions a widespread impact of the program, both in terms of environmental conservation and youth development. With a focus on creating employment opportunities in coastal regions and fostering a sense of responsibility towards the ocean, the Sea Rangers Service is poised to make a tangible difference in the UK.


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