Monday, February 17, 2020

Nickelodeon Australia Launches 'SpongeBob: Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef', a New Pro-Social Initiative to Help Protect the Great Barrier Reef

To celebrate SpongeBob's 20 years under the sea, Nickelodeon Australia and New Zealand is taking a deep dive into some of the big changes facing our reefs, and exploring all the hard work going in to keep things swimming along!

Australia - This year mark's the 20th anniversary of SpongeBob SquarePants, one of the most iconic TV series and characters ever created, and to commemorate the event, Nickelodeon Australia and New Zealand is partnering with Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef to launch Junior Citizens Of The Reef, a brand-new pro-social initiative which aims to raise awareness about the Great Barrier Reef, and what can be done to protect it - a cause very close to SpongeBob's heart.

The Great Barrier Reef is one of the planet's largest most magical natural wonders that is host to millions of species and organizms. It's a diverse, connected living ecosystem that helps keep our oceans healthy, and everyone, from kids to adults and even sea sponges, have a part to play in protecting it for generations to come. SpongeBob and Nickelodeon are on a mission to help keep our Great Barrier Reef healthy and thriving, and they need your support!

In the 20 years since SpongeBob first went to air, pollution and extreme changes in temperature have put the reef in more danger than ever. That's why Nickelodeon wants kids to join them to help raise awareness of one of the world's greatest natural assets! Kids can play an active part by signing up to become a Junior Citizen Of The Reef today at Kids who sign up to become a Junior Citizen Of The Reef will receive a personnel certificate so that they can share and display their official citizen status with their family and friends to encourage them to follow their lead and take action.

Whilst at, kids can learn more about the reef and discover how they can make a big difference in protecting our oceans with just a few small actions, as well as find out the wonders and threats to the reef, riveting reef facts, watch videos, and find out how they can get involved in protecting the Great Barrier Reef.

The Great Barrier Reef and all reefs in our ocean are a thing of absolute wonder, filled with all kinds of coral, marine creatures, and life beyond imagination. A vast, connected living ecosystem that's hidden away beneath us, yet so big, you can see it from space. It's an environment that's unfortunately has become increasingly under threat and may one day disappear if we don't take action.

Small actions equal big change. A future without the world's largest coral reef is unimaginable, but, there is hope! If kids around the world can commit to a series of small everyday actions to reduce carbon emissions, plastic pollution and food wastage, they can have a BIG impact on healing the reef! Simple actions, like saying "no thanks" to single use plastics, such straws, cups, bottles and plastic bags, along with minimising food wastage can all contribute to a start in the right direction.

Nickelodeon has teamed up popular celebrities who will serve as official Junior Citizens Of The Reef ambassadors throughout the campaign, who will share an important message around ocean conservation and what kids can do to help protect the reef. Celebrities include: DJ Tigerlilly, Georgia Productions, Alex Hayes, Rafferty Laight, Morgan Hipworth, Andy Ridley, and the Aussie Dolphins.

SpongeBob SquarePants was created by marine biologist Stephen Hillenburg, who sadly passed away in November 2018 following a battle with ALS. A fitting legacy for Hillenburg would be for his beloved character to help protect the reefs in our ocean.

Did you know that the Great Barrier Reef is a barometer for the well-being of the whole planet, and is one of the first major ecosystems to suffer from the devastating effects of climate change?

Help to keep our oceans squeaky clean by becoming a Junior Citizen Of The Reef today! Find out how at

To launch the campaign, Crystalbrook Superyacht Marina in Port Douglas will be a hive activity on Saturday (8th June 2019) morning when global children’s icon SpongeBob SquarePants will be at the Marina and the star on Channel 7s Sunrise morning show which will film live from Port Douglas.

The filming also coincides with World Ocean’s Day which is celebrated to remind you of the major role the oceans have in everyday life. They are the lungs of our planet, providing most of the oxygen we breathe.

The purpose of the day is to inform the public of the impact of human actions on the ocean, develop a worldwide movement of citizens for the ocean, and mobilize and unite the world’s population on a project for the sustainable management of the world's oceans.

Andy Ridley from the Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef will also be present on Saturday morning and is looking forwards to meeting the PDSS Reef Guardians, and all age groups are encouraged to attend and help kick off this great initiative.

Channel 7 will cross live for the weather and SpongeBob will be there from 7am and there will be five crossings to the Marina between 7am and 9.45am. This will be SpongeBob's first visit to the region.

Don't miss your chance to see SpongeBob SquarePants in Port Douglas.

The general manager of Crystalbrook Superyacht Marina, Robert Cruz, told Newsport he was excited to host this collaborative event.

“It’s great to show the health of the reef, to host SpongeBob SquarePants, Channel 7 and everyone who attends this special occasion,” said Cruz.


- What: Catch SpongeBob SquarePants live on Channel 7 Sunrise at Crystalbrook Superyacht Marina.
- When: Saturday 8 June between 7:00 - 9:45am to catch SpongeBob on his first visit to the Great Barrier Reef.
- Where: On the Marina boardwalk near Lure Restaurant.
- What to see: See Channel 7s Sunrise crew live at the Marina and celebrate World Ocean’s Day.
- Kids’ fun: Kids can also join SpongeBob's Reef Squad, Junior Citizens of the Reef.

Nickelodeon's Junior Citizens Of The Reef campaign forms part of the "Best Year Ever", Nickelodeon's year-long global celebration commemorating 20 years of SpongeBob SquarePants, one of the most iconic TV series and characters ever created. The “Best Year Ever” includes with the premiere of “SpongeBob’s Big Birthday Blowout,” an original mixed live-action and animated special, and leads up to the Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies theatrical, The SpongeBob Movie: It's a Wonderful Sponge, coming summer 2020.

Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef follows Nickelodeon Australia recently partnering with the Museum of Contemporary Art for Weave for the Reef.

Update (16/2/2020) - Junior Citizens of the Reef, an ocean conservation program for kids developed by Nickelodeon Australia in partnership with Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef, has been shortlisted for the "Best PR-led Brand Partnership Campaign" award in the 2020 Mumbrella CommsCon Awards! The innovative campaign has seen over 11,000 kids pledge to do their part to protect our oceans, and is now being rolled out internationally as part of Nickelodeon's Together For Good pro-social initiative, including on Nickelodeon UK & Ireland!

More Nick: Nickelodeon Marks 20 Years of "SpongeBob SquarePants" with the "Best Year Ever"!

Originally published: Thursday, June 6, 2019 at 8:54pm BST.

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