Our friends and longtime supporters at Soulucean want you to have the whole world in your hands, or at least Key Largo. With their new line of CRF™ clutches, Soulucean is donating 50% of their proceeds to support our mission. We sat down with the founder of Soulucean, Natazha, to learn why she chose to have her designs support, and reflect, our work.
What is your earliest memory of the ocean?
I can’t remember my earliest experience with the ocean. I grew up in San Diego, so it started pretty young! I feel like after having a child my own, my childhood seems so incredibly distant! I do remember her first steps in the big blue so vividly. I can recall a major life changing experience I had in the ocean as an adult... I was in the Maldives. I was there for almost a month, and I swam and snorkeled every day. It was one of the most special places I have ever been.
What is your favorite marine creature?
It might sound cliché, but I love dolphins! We have taken several trips to Bimini to swim and interact with wild dolphins and there is nothing else like it.
Have you experienced a healthy coral reef ecosystem?
I’ve gotten to see healthy reef systems in the Maldives, Tahiti, Hawaii, and the Bahamas. It made me feel like the rest of the world had disappeared and there was only the magic and joy of life under the sea.
Have you seen a badly degraded reef system?
I have seen badly degraded reef systems and it is so sad… like seeing an abandoned town or desolation where there used to be so much vibrance and life.
What concerns or scares you the most about climate change?
I worry that our daughter and future generations won’t get to have experiences like we’ve had because climate change is tangibly altering so much. Our generation has the weight and responsibility of making decisions that will determine so much for future generations.
Why is protecting and restoring coral reefs relevant to your brand?
Soulucean, is a combination of “Soul” and -cean (of or belonging to the sea), and is a homonym of “solution”. The word solution means both the answer to a problem, and when a minor solid, liquid, or gas is dissolved into a major liquid. Realizing that we are all part of something greater and connected, and the importance of protecting what we love, are core to my personal and business values. Being “ocean souls” my husband and I put protecting the coral reefs and ocean life at the top of our list.
Why should the average person care about coral reefs?
We are all connected, so what happens to a coral reef can impact us all.
In your opinion, what are some of the most powerful tools at our disposal that we can apply to the mission to save coral reefs?
Education is always the best place to start. When people understand what is happening and how everything is connected it becomes more relevant and important to them.
What do you think are some of the easiest ways that the average person can join the mission to save coral reefs from extinction?
Making good choices in their everyday life. Do your best to stay away from single use plastics. Buy soaps and laundry detergents that are bio safe. Buy organic, don’t litter, protect what you love for your children to enjoy. What we buy and eat are simple daily choices that we have control over.
Do you think there is hope for our coral reefs? Yes!! With organizations like CRF hard at work there is always hope. We owe it to our children and future grandchildren to try as hard as we can to preserve the coral reefs.
We are so thankful to Soulucean for their continued support of our mission and dedication to bringing the beauty of Key Largo and our Coral Nurseries to their clutches!
Madalen Howard is CRF's Marketing Associate. Madalen comes to CRF™ via a winding road from the Tennessee hills, to the South Carolina low country, ending here in Florida’s Coral Reef. She earned her Bachelor's degree in Marine Biology and a Minor in Environmental Studies from the College of Charleston in 2016. Her experience ranges from field research to education, and communications.
Madalen spent the last 4 years as a Field Instructor and Social Media Strategist for MarineLab Environmental Education Center. Here she was able to study and teach marine ecology, while snorkeling through mangroves, seagrasses, and coral reefs every day. While at MarineLab she combined her education and research background, entered the world of communications, and developed MarineLab’s social media department from the ground up.
Throughout her life Madalen has had a skill connecting people with nature. With CRF™, she is excited to bring people into the world of coral restoration, creating inclusive pathways to scientific discovery.