“For a better world”

The Mirpuri Foundation is a non-profit foundation set up in Portugal by the businessman and philanthropist Paulo Mirpuri as a vehicle to manage his family’s charitable donations and to support specific projects in aerospace, medical research, marine conservation, wildlife conservation and social responsibility.

In the context of its marine conservation programme, it is promoting a number of projects and initiatives related to ocean conservation, as well as events to consolidate these objectives in the future. Besides specific projects such as the “Save the Ocean” campaign, which covers a range of actions to increase public awareness of the need to protect oceans and marine species, the Mirpuri Foundation also aims to spread a message to increase awareness among global authorities of the undeniable importance of protecting oceans and of the dangers faced by the whole planet, as a consequence of both pollution and the effects of climate change and human actions.

Ocean related scientific research is a powerful tool to understand what is going on and how to protect the oceans, which ultimately means protecting the life of our future generations. There are many issues that informed governments must deal with urgently, including illegal fishing (which represents 20% of the fish caught in the ocean), deep-sea mining projects, sea temperature rise, ocean acidification, and the spread of invasive species.

The Mirpuri Foundation is spreading the message out to the public and to governments across the globe, warning them of the levels of pollution caused by fossil fuels, with the emission of billions of tonnes of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into earth’s atmosphere, with the oceans currently absorbing about a third of this pollution, in other words 22 million tons a day.

The dissolution of CO2 leads to higher acidity, which affects numerous species and the marine ecosystems. More alarming is the fact that if the oceans continue to absorb more CO2, their capacity as a carbon storehouse will diminish. That means more of the carbon dioxide we emit will remain in the atmosphere, further aggravating global climate change.

In this worrying scenario, the Mirpuri Foundation aims to lead by example, in order to ensure the greatest possible awareness of the need to protect the oceans and marine species. The Mirpuri Foundation’s plan of activities for 2017-2019 includes the promotion of initiatives to transmit a clear message accessible to as many people as possible.

In this context, its chairman, Paulo Mirpuri, will make his first transatlantic crossing on board a VOR70 racing yacht, in order to publicise one of the foundation’s most important slogans: “you can’t change the direction of the wind but you can adjust your sails to reach your destination”.

Taking the first step towards a better future for the planet, Paulo Mirpuri and a team of professional sailors will follow a transatlantic route of 2,300 nautical miles between Cape Verde and Barbados, in the Caribbean, reaffirming Portugal’s strong maritime tradition and history.

This will represent the start of a more ambitious sailing project that will include sponsorship of a Portuguese team in a sailing event of global importance. These projects thus introduce the numerous ocean-related initiatives that will be found in the future programme of the Mirpuri Foundation.

“The work and dedication of a yacht crew to achieve its objective – to follow a route and arrive safely – are reflected in the values of the Mirpuri Foundation. Ethics, courage, tenacity, persistence, hope, team spirit, technology and innovation are fundamental in the saga of an ocean crossing.”

“To cross a vast ocean helps us to become aware that it is truly possible to fulfil our dream of fighting to make the world better for future generations, starting with our children for whom we have so much love and for whom we believe that the risks that we run are amply compensated by the future benefits of all this substantive work.”

“In ocean sailing, we leave our safe harbour – land – and set out into the unknown, looking after ourselves for days, weeks and months on end. When difficulties arise (and during such a long voyage there are always more or less unexpected events), we can only rely on ourselves and on the commitment that survival requires from us.”

At sea, at the mercy of winds and currents and far from land, our human scale is adjusted and we are more conscious of the importance of each attitude that we adopt in daily life. To know that every decision and every step counts for the success of a sailing expedition – or for the common good of humanity and of the planet – is to recognise the importance of team work and of the values that guide it. “When work, commitment and pleasure are combined, nothing is impossible.”

The symbolic value of this act – crossing an ocean, confronting the unknown, facing difficulties and arriving safely – is important to publicise the message of the Mirpuri Foundation, whose chairman does not hesitate to go far beyond his comfort zone to achieve the objectives set out for a greater good.

The Mirpuri Foundation is also synonymous with technology, research, investigation, training and innovation in its contribution to a better world, as expressed in its motto – “for a better world”. Through partnerships with governments, entrepreneurs, communities and individuals, the Mirpuri Foundation supports a variety of projects in aerospace, medical research, ocean and marine conservation, wildlife conservation and social responsibility. “Our work is based on science, our scope is international and our mission is to create a world in which people live and prosper in harmony with nature.”

“Leading by example is the best way to transform mentalities and to show that it is possible to adopt attitudes that make a difference – such as, for example, avoiding products and food that cause damage to the environment, using clean power, sailing or cycling, recycling!”

The following initiatives were implemented by the Mirpuri Foundation in 2016 – www.http://www.mirpurifoundation.org/: – 1st Portuguese Symposium on Anti-Aging Medicine – First Flight experience – International Aid – Syrian refugee family in Portugal