Open for business: Nonprofit in Delaware continues to protect marine life

LEWES, Del. – Not-for-profit organizations like the Marine Education, Research & Rehabilitation Institute (MERR) in Delaware are being significantly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The nonprofit, which rescues and cares for marine life along the coast, says they’re facing huge challenges during the outbreak.

“We do have to wear a mask just in our normal engagement with these animals because of the potential for disease transmission and we are very limited on gloves and other supplies,” said Suzanne Thurman, executive director at the MERR Institute.

And with seal season right now at its peak, we’re told this group is working with fewer volunteers, to help maintain public safety.

“We have limited the number of volunteers because we don’t want to expose our volunteers to any situations that could be threatening for them,” said Rob Rector, a board member at the MERR Institute.

On top of that, this team says they’ve had to cancel critical fundraisers and programs that help keep the organization going.

“For general operating procedures and now additionally we have our volunteers with PPE as well, and they need to respond as well and with all of those additional procedures comes additional costs,” said Rector.

But despite these challenges, we’re told this organization will do everything it can to stay on the frontlines and continue protecting these animals.

“So, we’re doing this all with diminished resources, with diminished staff, with diminished funding, but our commitment to these creatures stays strong,” said Rector.

We’re told the MERR Institute is need of donations and for more information on how you can help, click here.

Categories: Delaware, Open For Business, Top Stories