The Canadian Ocean Literacy Coalition (COLC) is an alliance of organizations, networks, institutions, and communities working together to empower Canadians to better understand, value, and care for the ocean. In 2019-2020, COLC led the Understanding Ocean Literacy in Canada study (2019-2020), which directly informed the co-development of the Canadian Ocean Literacy Strategy that was launched in March 2021 – making Canada the first country in the world with a National Strategy. COLC coordinates joint action that advances the National Strategy, including, for example, Ocean Week Canada – an annual national celebration of events, learning, and engagement held during the week of World Ocean Day (June 8). COLC’s National Strategy work is nested within Canada’s Ocean Decade Community of Champions.
Internationally, COLC co-leads the Ocean Literacy Research Community (OLRC) initiative, as well as serving as a Steering Committee member of the IOC-UNESCO-led Ocean Literacy With All Programme, and an expert on the All-Atlantic Ocean Research and Innovation Alliance’s Ocean Citizen Awareness Working Group.
The essence of ocean literacy lies in us working together across different geographical and socio-cultural contexts to catalyze action and achieve the overarching goal of the UN Ocean Decade – ‘to change humanity’s relationship with the ocean.’