ELP Silver Partner - Sea Otter Foundation & Trust

Employees at an event for SOFT Sea Otters playing

Sea Otter Foundation logo   Icon representing materials management Icon representing involvement in the community

Sea Otter Foundation & Trust (SOFT)
The mission of The Sea Otter Foundation & Trust (SOFT) is to ensure the survival and recovery of sea otters in their habitats by building funds to support research, conservation and education. In order to achieve our mission, SOFT fundraises to issue annual grants to enhance the ability of researchers, scientists, zoological facilities housing sea otters, universities and nonprofits to explore range-wide sea otter ecological studies, educational conservation programs, as well as science and technology advancements that relate to the sea otter. 
By focusing on states such as Colorado and the local communities surrounding Denver that are not directly connected to sea otter habitat, SOFT educates communities regarding the importance of sea otter conservation despite the physical gap that may exist between themselves and the Pacific Ocean. Sea otters are known as indicator species, meaning they help characterize an environmental condition, such as a pollution source, or other significant changes happening in their coastal environment through a variety of markers (e.g., physical health of individuals, growth of a population, disease growth or persistence, etc.). While this concept may seem distant to Colorado and the other 45 states unassociated with the sea otter's Pacific habitat, sea otters play a vital role in revealing potential issues with our own food sources, such as pollutants in seafood sources that can affect people locally in Colorado. 
One of our organization's messages locally in Colorado is the idea that we need to keep sea otter habitat and the associated watershed clean. A way that we excite the citizens and children of our state that they can make a difference for the ocean and rivers is through the promotion of an extensive recycling program for difficult-to-recycle and non-recyclable items.