AWARDED the highest environmental honour by the United Nations  2021

 © Coral Sea Foundation

The Sea Women of Melanesia program empowers indigenous women with scuba diving and marine science skills so they can take an active role in creating and monitoring marine protected areas on their own coral reefs.  

Mission Objectives

The island archipelagos of Melanesia contain marine ecosystems of exceptionally high quality and diversity, including the last great reservoirs of high-biodiversity reef remaining in the Coral Triangle. However, most of this area is remote and rarely visited, and there are currently insufficient marine protected areas to safeguard biodiversity and achieve robust conservation outcomes. 

The aim of the Sea Women of Melanesia and our partner organisation the Coral Sea Foundation, is to raise awareness of the ecological and social value the Coral Sea and Eastern Coral Triangle, and to be proactive in its sustainable management. Combining an ethos of science, gender equity, and sustainability, the Sea Women of Melanesia work with traditional landowners to develop marine reserves that enhance fisheries and biodiversity, while improving the basic quality of life of people in our partner villages through delivery of humanitarian aid. The Sea Women of Melanesia training program empowers indigenous women with the education, skills and resources they need to take an active role in raising community awareness and creating and monitoring marine protected areas on their own coral reefs. 

This program supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals of Gender Equality, Sustainable Communities, Climate Action, and Life Below Water and has women actively engaged in marine conservation activities at 6 locations across Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands. 

To date over 30 women have been trained through the program, and it has led to more than 20 new marine reserve areas being proposed and surveyed in high conservation-value locations in the coral triangle marine biodiversity hotspot.

The Sea Women of Melanesia is a not-for-profit Association incorporated in Papua New Guinea, while the Coral Sea Foundation is a non-profit company incorporated in Australia, with tax-deductible donation status in Australia, the USA, and Europe. 

Members of our boards have international experience in tropical marine science, marine resource management, ecotourism, maritime operations, and international business marketing and brand development.


We value corporate engagement highly and offer a wide range of cause-related-marketing tools and benefits.

For any inquiries on how to engage, be of support or associate with the Organization please contact: