For over 10 years, the Hawaiian Monk Seal Preservation Ohana or HMSPO has been in existence as a volunteer organization that (1) provides education and outreach to Oahu’s communities about the species and (2) cares for, protects, and responds to the needs of Oahu’s Hawaiian Monk Seals. You may be more familiar with one of our previous names: the Monk Seal Foundation (MSF) and/or Hawaiian Monk Seal Response Team Oahu (HMSRTO).
HMSPO works closely with other monk seal organizations both on Oahu and the neighboring Hawaiian Islands as well as NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) the overarching federal agency who oversees the needs and governance of Hawaii’s monk seal Ohana.
Through key partnerships with local, state, federal and non-profit agencies, HMSPO provides the following services to Oahu’s communities in support of Hawaii’s Monk Seals:
- Education to public and private pre-K through high school-age students about the biological, lifestyle, and cultural significance of Hawaii’s monk seals in a meaningful and sensitive manner.
- Outreach at community festivals, forums, local libraries, hotels and resorts, etc., through our “Talk Story” program.
- Promote and educate coexistence with Hawaii’s Monk Seals by working with fisheries and other partners to meet the monk seals’ conservation needs including the importance of keeping our beaches and oceans clean as well as safe and responsible guidelines for viewing the seals both in the water and on land.
- Help “tell the story” of the Hawaiian Monk Seal by acting as the historians who document and archive the past, present, and future of Hawaii’s Monk Seals for the benefit of researchers, conservationists, biologists and other stakeholders for generations to come.
- When needed, HMSPO will be ready to respond to seal emergencies and sightings as called upon.
The Hawaiian Monk Seal Preservation Ohana (HMSPO) is an adjunct Organization under the auspices of the Conservation Council for Hawaii, a 501c(3) organization. All donations are accountable under IRS rules. HMSPO has no paid employees, rents, or mortgages, and is debt-free. Services to the public are provided free of charge.