Meet the Local Nonprofit Creating Tomorrow’s Environmental Stewards

By Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation

In honor of Earth Day, the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation is pleased to welcome South Fork Sea Farmers (SF² ) to our Grantee Blog. SF² is based in East Hampton, New York and promotes the importance of protecting marine environments through sustainable marine aquaculture. The nonprofit raises awareness and funds, supports and maintains oyster growing projects, and creates educational opportunities for its community members to become stewards of the local marine environment.

Courtesy of South Fork Sea Farmers

South Fork Sea Farmers (SF2) focuses on engaging students throughout their lives. Young children, high school students, and college-bound young adults can all find opportunities in our programs and initiatives. Through learning about reef construction, planting eel grass, shell collection, and more, we are creating the next generation of environmental stewards, thought leaders and professionals, and a future where our community has the knowledge to be kinder to the environment.

Every summer, SF² provides specialized programming that cultivates curiosity and meets students where they are.

Young children learn oyster farming and shellfish habitats onsite at SF²’s East Hampton Nursery.

Local high school students in science clubs join us as summer interns, learning reef construction and seeding firsthand. In the words of a previous SF² summer intern, “of course I learned about the scientific and technical side of the hatchery, but I was surprised by the supportive community of like-minded individuals that it consists of. I’ve gained a plethora of interpersonal skills and motivation towards helping inspire future environmentalists. … This hands-on learning experience has intrigued me into the natural intricacies of our world more than ever before. I hope to continue studying the environment and biology in college and beyond.”

SF² is thrilled when students’ interest in the local ecosystem blossoms into collegiate concentrations in marine and environmental studies, so we established a scholarship program to support them. This year, we have extended our scholarship outreach to include more local high schools and their students, with a focus on investing in young community leaders excelling academically while overcoming adversity, such as financial need and economic disadvantage.

We are proud to share opportunities with these students as they contribute to projects that increase the health of our marine life and town waters through bay restoration and reef building—benefits the entire community will experience for years to come.

About South Fork Sea Farmers  

SF² works collaboratively with the East Hampton Town Shellfish Hatchery to expand and broaden educational programs and encourage other residents to be stewards of their marine environment. SF² is on a mission to educate and raise awareness of the importance of sustainable marine aquaculture and to inspire constructive action programs. Our goal is to promote and encourage more public oyster gardening which keeps our waters clean, provide habitat for marine life and improves our overall ecosystem. SF² is a 501(c)(3) organization.

Learn more about SF² by visiting