Fundación Surfrider Rincón (FSR) is a non-profit community-based grassroots/volunteer staffed group, and in 2009 was also chartered as an independent member chapter of Surfrider Foundation, the national 501 (c, 3) nonprofit environmental organization registered in California. Surfrider now consists of 90 chapters worldwide, and about 50,000 members, and this international network is available to us. FSR was the first chapter to be organized in a non-English speaking country, and was formed in 2001 primarily to develop and help realize the creation of the Reserva Marina Tres Palmas (RMTP) in Rincòn, PR’s first officially co-managed Marine Protected Area. RMTP contains the last healthy and genetically diverse stands of elkhorn coral (acropora palmata) in PR, which is a federally-protected endangered species. Although FSR does not have a seat on the Management Board, the chapter was instrumental in forming the RMTP and to date is the only effective on-site monitoring organization concerned with the preservation of this area.
As well as this major commitment, the chapter also carries out other projects (most noticeably the only community-based weekly water testing program in PR) and regular activities and events such as beach cleanups, tree planting, recycling and solid waste management at local surfing contests, school presentations, and fundraising. Learn more about our programs here. FSR actively collaborates with other local environmental and community groups, the Mayaguez campus of UPR (especially the marine sciences department) and the Sea Grant office of NOAA.
Chapter activities are loosely based on the CARE concept, of Conservation, Awareness, Research and Education, and FSR is active in all these areas.
Meet us at the Rincón farmer’s market and join us at our monthly meetings, or stay informed with our email updates and check out our Calendar to see what we’ve got going on!
Fundación Surfrider Rincón was the first chapter to be organized in a non-English speaking country.
Beyond the general mission of the national Surfrider Foundation, the Rincón chapter has developed specific focal areas due to its unique status within the national network. As an integral partner in the creation of the Reserva Marina Tres Palmas the chapter continues to promote and protect the RMTP and encourage the creation of other co-managed Marine Protected Areas in PR. The experience gained from the RMTP effort has allowed the chapter to become well versed in all aspects of coastal management, and especially in coral reef ecology and protection.
The chapter actively promotes ‘citizen science’ thru several long term programs (such as water quality monitoring and research, and marine debris removal) and encourages community involvement in science-based research by UPR and other educational, non-profit, or governmental agencies in the local area.
In broader terms the chapter also supports and encourages grassroots organizing in the community, and actively partners with new groups forming to promote responsible participation in water sports, environmental issues, and cultural activities that preserve and protect valuable cultural or social resources in Rincón and the surrounding area.