MERITO stands for Multicultural Education for Resources Issues Threatening Oceans

Here at MERITO Foundation, we are committed to protecting the ocean by facilitating education, conservation, and scientific research opportunities to multicultural youth and their communities.

Our Latest News


Executive Director & Founder has been nominated for the Spirit of Entrepreneurship Awards

Rocío Lozano-Knowlton, MERITO Foundation's Founder and Executive Director is nominated to be among the amazing group of 30 Finalists being honored by the Spirit of Entrepreneurship Awards. For 11 years WEV has led the Spirit of Entrepreneurship Awards to honor deserving women entrepreneurs from Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties who have worked hard to build businesses that impact our local economies and improves our environment.

Join us in celebrating 30 women entrepreneurs and their impact on our community on Friday, May 21, from 12:00 – 1:30 pm during the virtual celebration. You can register using the button below.

You can watch the full live stream of the event on our Facebook page if you missed it.

26 students from 5 regional public schools won prizes during the EECCOA Challenge 2021 & Awards Events

 Congrats to the finalists who participated in the 2021 EECCOA Challenge! Students from five different schools worked hard to create a business proposal to make their homes more sustainable.  An array of unique ideas were proposed and the MERITO Foundation hosted the virtual event announcing the winners on Friday, April 30th. The video posted here is a compilation of some of the finalists' project proposals.

Our Vision

Our vision is a healthy ocean cared by diverse coastal communities who live in an environmentally responsible manner regardless of native language, economic status, cultural beliefs, or ethnic background because we all share one ocean.

Our Mission

Our Mission is ocean protection through education, conservation, citizen science, and to inspire the next generation of environmental professionals.


Educators Trained


4th-12th grade students immersed in ocean and climate education


Project proposals authored by students to reduce their school carbon footprint 


Students sponsored education trips to Channel Islands


Hands on conservation and/or citizen science field experiences


Disbursed as cash and in kind prizes to students authors of best projects

How We Do It 

Ocean and Climate

Education Programs

Bilingual Outreach

Conservation and Citizen Science

International Citizen Science

Teacher's Training Workshops

Services Tailored for Schools


"The MERITO Academy was an inspirational experience for my students and I when I taught 5th grade level. Without the program, my students would not otherwise have gotten access to such a high quality of science instruction."

Teresa (Terry) Ellingson

Watch Our Video