“”I don’t want to live in a world where I could say to my daughter, ‘There used to be turtles that swam in the ocean,'” says actress Angela Kinsey about her involvement in a new series of public service announcements for the nonprofit Oceana. Kinsey, who appears as the uptight cat-loving Angela in The Office, spent much of her childhood in Indonesia. “We didn’t go to the park,” she recalls, “the ocean was my park.” So it makes sense that she would join her friend, actress Rachael Harris, in the Getting Sea Turtles Off the Hook campaign.
After attending an Oceana event with Harris, Angela says, “I got the wake-up call that no one is policing our oceans. I wondered, how can I do anything? What really can I do to make things better? There are some perks to being a celebrity. My job is to be funny once in a while, but it’s my responsibility to make good use of it.” So Kinsey and Harris ended up in the Rivera Maya in Mexico where they were able to swim with green and loggerhead sea turtles.
“I had never been that close to a sea turtle before,” she says with wonder. “I knew that you leave them be. This is their world we’re visiting. It was amazing to watch them. A few were so big and majestic and graceful. They maintain the coral reef where the little fish live, and then the big fish eat the little fish. Everything works together.” She also learned that though sea turtles have been swimming in the world’s oceans for over 100 million years, they are now at risk of extinction due to human actions. Threats to sea turtles include coastal development along nesting beaches, pollution, fishing and climate change.”
Read more: The Office’s Angela Kinsey Gets Serious About Sea Turtles