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Conservation Organisations

There are a wide range of environmental conservation organisations, many of which have a marine focus. You can support these organisations through both volunteering and donations. Some important conservation organisations for whales include:


The Organisation for the Rescue and Research of Cetaceans in Australia (ORRCA) works to help rescue stranded marine mammals. It is a volunteer organisation and is the only licensed group allowed to be involved in marine mammal rescue, rehabilitation and release.

ORRCA trains many members of government agencies as well as its own members, in marine mammal rescue. ORRCA is also involved in marine rehabilitation and release. Plus it currently has a range of research programs that aim to learn more about whales, and how we can help protect them.

ORRCA has a 24 hour hotline to call if you see a whale in distress: 02 9415 3333.


The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) seeks to create a better world for animals. It believes the fate of the world’s animals is inextricably linked to our own. IFAW works on a number of wildlife conservation campaigns. It was famously responsible for the banning of the seal pup hunt off Canada's east coast. IFAW currently has a "make a whale tail" campaign, where you can show your support and learn more about whales.


Earthwatch aims to engage the community in scientific research and education to promote the understanding of a sustainable environment as well as the actions necessary to create one. This worldwide organisation promotes volunteering and encourages grass roots community involvement.

Sea Shepherd

Established in 1977, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is an independent international non-profit, marine wildlife conservation organization. Sea Shepherd uses direct-action tactics to investigate, document, and take action on the high seas.


Greenpeace is an independent campaigning organisation that uses direct action to expose global environmental problems and to force solutions. Greenpeace's goal is to ensure the ability of the earth to nurture life in all its diversity.

The Oceania Project

Established in 1988 The Oceania Project is dedicated to raising awareness about whales, dolphins and the ocean environment through research, dissemination of information and education programs.  Affiliated with Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre (SCUWRC) and numerous other organisations, the major activity of The Oceania Project is a long-term study of the social behaviour and social organisation of eastern Australian humpback whales in Hervey Bay, Queensland Australia.

Project Aware 

Project AWARE Foundation, a registered non-profit organisation, mobilises the world’s divers to protect our ocean planet – one dive at a time. Project AWARE empowers thousands of divers in more than 100 countries to combat two major ocean issues – sharks in peril and marine debris. Join the growing movement of divers striving toward a clean, healthy and abundant ocean planet.

Note: Opinions and values held by these external organisations do not necessarily reflect those of the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage.

  • NSW National Parks & Wildlife Service
  • NSW