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See below to participate in our Impact Sector survey, access our COVID-19 Resource Hub, and explore our growing directory of COVID-19-specific and virtual volunteering opportunities.
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  • New York Marine Rescue Center New York Marine Rescue Center


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Mission Statement

The primary mission of the Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation is to preserve and protect our marine environment through education, rehabilitation, and research. The Riverhead Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit organization that operates the Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Rescue Program in New York State. The Riverhead Foundation is dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and release of seals, sea turtles, whales, dolphins, and porpoises. Some of these species are critically endangered and may become extinct in our lifetime. The Riverhead Foundation is the only organization authorized by New York State to operate the New York State Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Rescue Program. The Riverhead Foundation's educational efforts are dedicated to informing the public about our marine environment and how they can aid in its preservation. The Riverhead Foundation needs the help and support of the public to carry out its mission. We cannot do this alone.


The Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation is located at Atlantis Marine World Aquarium in Riverhead, NY. Our facility is equipped to house and treat the many species of marine mammal and sea turtle that are present in New York's waters. If an animal is sighted and seems to be in distress, members of our staff and trained volunteers will go to the scene and attempt a rescue. The rescuee is then transported to our facility where they will undergo testing to determine what treatments are necessary for their eventual release back into the wild. Rescued animals will stay with us anywhere from 3-8 months.

In addition to rehabilitation an education, the Riverhead Foundation engages in research. The Riverhead Foundation is currently conducting an extensive marine mammal and sea turtle abundance study throughout the coastal waters of New York State. The study encompasses aerial, shipboard, and land-based surveys.


Average Review 1 reviews

Would you recommend New York Marine Rescue Center?

by Shannon G. (March 26, 2016)
The Riverhead Foundation is an amazing organization to volunteer with. They provide you with a ton of training on all of the various animals, depending on your interests. There's so much opportunity to try out different positions within the organization to find the perfect fit for you whether that's fundraising, adoptions, research, seal cruises, teaching, or helping with the rescue team. Scheduling is always flexible and easy. You can pick a shift up until 24 hours before, in whatever area you choose. Volunteers are ages 12 and up with a good mix of ages and everyone is extremely friendly and outgoing. I would definitely recommend volunteering with the Riverhead Foundation!