Hope Spots

Nomination Guidelines & FAQs: Wish, Act, Protect!

Thank you for your interest in nominating a Hope Spot. While anyone is welcome to nominate a Hope Spot we do hope that you are ready to commit time to working for your Hope Spot and partnering with others in your local community that will help achieve tangible results. All nominations must be supported by the local community in the Hope Spot. There are many ways that can happen and you will be able to direct that progress according to your needs and timetable. Please note that work in the Hope Spot will take place for years to come therefore we request that you are committed long term.

Knowing what you need beforehand will allow you to save time and complete the form more easily. We recommend filling out the nomination in the word document provided below and once you feel your nomination is complete, copy and paste that information into the online form. In doing so you will have a backup in case something is lost in the process and you can submit it in one go.

There are two types of nominators, an individual who is not representing an NGO or an individual representing an NGO and/or multiple parties. In either case we require that your nomination has community support. Community support will help ensure the success of the Hope Spot and future actions.

  • Individual not representing an NGO:
    For an individual who is not representing an NGO we recommend you partner with an NGO or scientific organization who will be able to assist you in filling out the scientific questions in the nomination form and be a scientific partner if the Hope Spot is designated.

  • Individual representing an NGO:
    For an individual representing an NGO, while you don’t need to partner with another organization to submit the nomination, we do require a minimum of 2 letters of support from outside organizations or individuals. Please see information for letters of support below.

Please include the following required materials when submitting your nomination:

  • A list of partners who are supporting this nomination. We recommend at least 2 additional partners other than the nominating party.
  • A minimum of 2 letters of support from outside organizations or individuals. These can be NGO’s, schools, universities, political leaders, community leaders etc. The letters of support should state their intention in supporting this nomination and the actions that will be taken in the future should it be designated as a Hope Spot.
  • Photos, videos, documents, articles etc. 
  • Photos are required, we recommend 20-25. Please label all photos as follows:  speciesname_credit.jpeg or aerialviewofinsertareanamehere_nocredit.jpeg
  • Be sure that all fields within the nomination form that are required are filled out.
  • Tip! It’s important that you take the time and effort to fill in the form well, otherwise we are likely to ask you to give additional information or defer the nomination- all of which takes more time and effort from everyone. Two points we find nominators don’t give enough attention to is the importance of having other local partners and giving us enough information about what you want to do here. If you seriously want to make a difference in your Hope Spot, both are essential and the council will consider these points seriously.
  • Here is a word document of the nomination form so you can prepare and have a backup prior to submitting the online nomination.


Nomination Process:

Step 1: Find and establish partners within the community who support this nomination and will also support ongoing work once it is designated as a Hope Spot.

Step 2: Fill out the nomination form.

Step 3: Once you have filled out the nomination form and submitted required information, it will go under an initial review. We will contact nominees for further information as needed and to discuss next steps.

Step 4: Once your nomination has passed the initial review and contains all required information, it will be presented to the Hope Spots Council who will review the nomination and determine whether or not it will be designated as an official Hope Spot. You will be notified by a member of our team either way.

Step 5: Once the Hope Spot is officially designated by the Hope Spots Council, we will work with you to launch it publicly on our map, website and media channels.

Step 6: You as our Hope Spot Champion and your partners will work on a variety of actions to help achieve results and protection in your Hope Spot. This is ongoing.


Frequently Asked Questions


1. How does Mission Blue support Hope Spots?

This is a really exciting time for marine conservation as the world is gaining momentum in dealing with the many threats our oceans are facing. Please see the infographic below that shows how we support Hope Spots:


2. What is the advantage of being identified as a Hope Spot?

Upon approval as a Hope Spot, Mission Blue celebrates with you or your organization by scheduling a press announcement and assisting in increasing local, national and governmental appreciation. We will also host and share online stories about your Hope Spot on multiple platforms including our beautiful newsletter: Hope Spot Sentinel! The news will have massive social media outreach, locally and globally and so it will be a great opportunity to share your story with the world. This globally recognized platform will become a valuable education and marketing tool- the possibilities are endless and will hopefully lead to legal protection. Additionally, please see question 1 above which details the support Mission Blue offers for our Hope Spots.

3. Why should I champion a Hope Spot (become a Hope Spot Champion)?

Hope Spot Champions want to stand up, take action and make a difference for the area they nominate. Every individual counts and you can help lead by example!

As a Champion:

  1. Your efforts reach a worldwide audience of more than a million Mission Blue brand online followers online. We elevate Hope Spots and create public pressure for their official protection– putting your Hope Spot and your efforts on the map!
  2. You’re connected with more than 200 Mission Blue partners, ranging from large corporations to small nonprofits who support Hope Spots.
  3. You’re able to apply for a Hope Spot expedition, in which the Mission Blue team joins you to tell the story of your Hope Spot, highlighting research, conservation, and educational efforts. Our team influences policymakers and creates compelling documentaries that educate and inspire the public. 
  4. Mission Blue’s global network of supporters will be at your fingertips to help fuel your petition, attend your beach cleanup, participate in ecotourism at your Hope Spot– and more! As a Champion, you have access to a worldwide community of marine conservationists and ocean stewards dedicated to making the planet a healthier place.

4. What will happen to my stories and the information I give you?

With your permission, the stories and information you provide to Mission Blue will be shown on our Hope Spots Information Platform so people from around the world can learn about your Hope Spot. We will also use it to contribute to our newsletter and to be shared on our website and social media networks. We are building a movement to ignite support for a global network of marine protected areas. Your submissions will never be sold or used for commercial purposes.

5. How can I learn more about Hope Spots?

Sign up to the Hope Spot Sentinel newsletter and explore the Mission Blue website for general information about the initiative, as well as maps, videos, photos, descriptions, stories and much more about individual Hope Spots. If Netflix is available in your location, you may view the Emmy Award Winning documentary, for the story behind Dr. Earle and Hope Spots or you can purchase a DVD here.

6. How can I support Hope Spots apart from just nominating one?

There are numerous ways:

  1. a) Financial help- make a donation (any amount is important!) to Mission Blue via the website link.
  2. b) Media support- You can help by donating photographs and videos you may have from Hope Spots – especially those underwater and from remote areas. To donate content:
  3. c) Volunteering support- Contact a local organization working in your Hope Spot area and offer your time to volunteer for them. It’s free for you, but has a huge impact and the organizations are usually very grateful for any help in the field.


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