Ocean Advocates: Final Week

Hey Ocean Advocates!

As the JSA’s summer comes to an end, we’ll leave you with one last module: involving your community. Over the course of the summer, we’ve given you the tools you need to design clean regattas, practice green boating concepts and become stewards of the ocean. We hope that you’ve found this educational and helpful in some way, and that you’ll be able to share with your respective communities. The sailing scene has a lot to learn about our effect on our environment, and we hope you’ll help us get there. If you need something to refer to in the future, download the Green Boating Guide for a deeper dive.

Reach out with any questions, thoughts, prompts, or just to say hi. And, let us know if you try any of the below! We’d love to hear how it goes.


Let’s say you’ve organized a successful clean regatta within the JSA. Incredible work! But, that’s just the first part of the job.The second part is spreading the message. It’s not just patting yourself on the back, it’s raising awareness among others so that they know that they can and should host or participate in a clean regatta. Behavioral economic theory says that people are more likely to take an action when the actions of their peers are made public. Imagine a world in which clubs are hosting clean regattas, but no one knows about it, so other clubs don’t even realize that there’s a change they should make. By sharing your own successes, you might inform and inspire another organizer to make their next regatta a clean one.

Another instance in which it’s beneficial to publicize your efforts is in advance of the event. It will help raise awareness among participants, inform their expectations and provide incentive for everyone to work hard to make the event a smashing success.

How do you do it?

First, you can turn to social media, an incredibly powerful influence tool. Promote your efforts and commitments and encourage others to share. Next, make sure to have your announcement show up in all other relevant channels. You should be taking advantage of any platform that sailors would interact with – your yacht club’s site, the Notice of Race, email communications, etc. Even better: create your own page dedicated to ocean advocacy at your club! That is the best and most public way to share successes and track efforts over time.


Involving your community can be as simple as creating good signage. Signs can help spread your message and remind people of your goals. They can be utilitarian (i.e. “where to fill your water bottle”), or they can be a creative display of your identity. They’re easy to make and easy to understand – they’re analog influencers!

Making signs as an activity: Pro tips

  • Be intentional about the material you’re using to make your signs. Just like dishware and cutlery, it’s best if they’re durable and reusable year after year. If you use plastic, that’s okay, as long as you can reuse it.

    • Another option is painted wooden signs! This is a durable and fun option that can involve sailors of all ages.

    • Part of the activity can be getting creative about the materials used. What do you have lying around that could be upcycled? What is the most durable material you can find?

  • Be mindful about messaging. Your language is extremely important for setting the tone and encouraging others to join you. Stay action-oriented and positive, and make sure if you’re including facts that they’re fact-checked.


While sailing is certainly the focus of most events held at your clubs, a huge (and probably underrated) element is also FOOD! Events offer a great opportunity to work with and amplify local farmers. There are a few reasons that locally and responsibly sourced food is good for the environment. For one, pesticides or synthetic fertilizers that are commonly used on farms create harmful runoff that contaminates our waterways. Sustainable seafood plays a critical role in monitoring our food supply, consumer health and the environment. Sustainable fisheries take into account ocean health and resources, prevent overfishing, rebuild depleted stocks, avoid interaction with protected species, and conserve essential fish habitats. If you’re looking for a local business to support, sustainable fisheries are the most environmentally efficient source of protein in the world.  Local food also cuts down on the distance traveled and carbon emissions created from mass transportation. Food sourced from less than 100 miles away can be considered “local.”

REMEMBER: Share with your communities, tag us on Instagram, let us know how you’re doing!

-Ocean Advocates @JSAofLIS

Article contributed by Megan Grapengeter-Rudnick: Megan is a life long sailor who grew up sailing at Noroton YC and was an instructor at Riverside YC for one summer. She now races J/70s, IC37s and Viper 640s on the weekends. Megan is a volunteer leader with Sailors of the Sea because she knows healthy oceans are key to mitigating climate change and believes sailors have a unique responsibility to protect their second home.