Harnessing the power of the many

Mission: Working collaboratively to advance social enterprise and marine protection.





The Gallifrey Foundation seeks to foster social enterprise, applying commercial strategies to improve human and environmental well-being, rather than simply maximising profits for external shareholders.

The Gallifrey Foundation supports several scholarships for a variety of students from primary, university and post-graduate education. In addition, the Gallifrey Foundation supports selected research in social enterprise.

Marine Protection

The Gallifrey Foundation seeks to identify collaborative opportunities to tackle the most pressing ocean conservation issues facing us today. There are many organizations already deeply involved in the issues we care about and our mission is to assist them by identifying synergies that could be exploited and roadblocks that could be overcome by working together.

Our model of engagement is to partner with organisations, schools or businesses on the ground, draft a pilot project as a testing case, and then scale up the solutions based on the lessons learned.


Educational Causes

Research in Social Enterprise

A solution to the financial challenges facing micro-entrepreneurs in Ghana is the objective of a research project from London Business School led by Professor Rajesh Chandy, The Tony & Maureen Wheeler Chair in Entrepreneurship and Academic Director of the Business for Development Institute supported by the Gallifrey Foundation.

The research project will identify the effectiveness of different loan products designed to give micro-enterprises the boost they need to become successful small and medium enterprises.
Half of the businesses in the study are offered a ‘locked-in’ product, where the loan funds must be invested in business assets focused on enhancing productivity such as new equipment, inventory or vehicles. The other half of the businesses are offered the second ‘unlocked’ product, where the loan funds are unrestricted and the entrepreneur can decide how they would like to spend the money.

The researchers will be tracking each of the businesses over time to compare the effects of the two loan types on how the entrepreneurs manage money, how their businesses perform, and how they and their families are affected by this.

The Salient

The Salient is a film about one of the most contested spots of the Great War: the half circle north and east of Ypres that protruded into enemy territory and became known as the Ypres Salient. Less than five miles wide, more than a million people were killed or wounded in this small area during four years of bitter fighting. In due time the Salient came to symbolize every description heard in conjunction with the Great War: sacrifice, courage, honor and duty just as much as chaos, slaughter, calamity and utter senselessness.

The Gallifrey Foundation support allows the film to be made available at no cost to schools worldwide.  Click here for more information on the film and download links: The Salient


Marine Protection

  • Sea Fever
  • Plastics Pollution – Azores
  • Marine Education
  • Plastics Pollution - Maldives
  • Plastics Pollution - Palestine
  • Plastic Free Campus
  • Arctic
  • Deep Sea Mining

Sea Fever

The greatest danger to the oceans is not pollution, acidification or overfishing but the ignorance and apathy that allows these incidents to occur in the first place. To promote a better understanding of the oceans’ importance, the Foundation commissioned Sea Fever – People and their Ocean Planet.

Written by the Foundation’s Advisor on Marine Programs, Dr. Luc Cuyvers, Sea Fever – People and their Ocean Planet examines how we have used (and sometimes abused) the ocean throughout the centuries.

The book is available as a free download.

free download.

Plastics Pollution – Azores

The Gallifrey Foundation funded the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) research project. Establishing a Baseline on Marine Litter in the Azores – AZORLIT in collaboration with IMAR Center of the University of the Azores, the Observatory of the Azores (OMA and the Regional Directorate for Maritime Affairs (DGRAM).

Marine Education

The majority of educational resources that explain the issue of plastic pollution are created in English and largely directed at children in developed countries.

To address this gap for children in the developing world, the Gallifrey Foundation has engaged PCI Media Impact to create a new comic based on SDG Goal 14 – Life Below Water. Distribution via Ministries of Education will help to raise the profile of this issue in national curricula and promote a sense of individual responsibility and encourage action to reduce marine debris. Behaviour change at a young age can instil habits and a sense of environmental citizenship for life.

Plastics Pollution - Maldives

The Gallifrey Foundation has collaborated with IUCN Maldives to carry out a local Reef Guardian project, a community-oriented project to encourage sustainable reef behaviour. Working with the Maldivian Ministry of Education, changes to the national curriculum are being proposed in order to better institutionalize education on this topic and encourage youth-led action.

Plastics Pollution - Palestine

The Gallifrey Foundation is currently developing a project to tackle land-based sources and impact of plastic pollution in urban and rural environments through a collaborative project with Masar Ibrahim al Khalil, a non-profit community-based tourism initiative that delineates and develops Masar Ibrahim, a walking path through the West Bank.

This one-year pilot involves creating a self-sustaining business model based on waste-to-wealth conversion. This project involves training local women in upcycling techniques and business skills in order to empower them with the skills needed for entrepreneurship. These upcycled products will be used as the basis of a public awareness campaign that seeks to mobilise other parts of Palestinian society to tackle this issue. This project responds to the growing need in many parts of the world to compensate for a lack of institutional capacity for waste management.

Plastic Free Campus

The Gallifrey Foundation is currently in the first year of a pilot program entitled Plastic Free Campus, working with international schools to mobilise student action on single-use plastics consumption. This has involved closely working with our pilot schools to establish the best way to create change at four levels: in the curriculum, in the school community, in cross-campus and inter-school networks and in larger institutional bodies like the International Baccalaureate Organisation.



By the middle of the century the Arctic Ocean will be ice-free for at least part of the year, confronting humanity with a dilemma:  exploit the Arctic Ocean the way we have exploited all of the ocean, or keep it untouched, the way it has been for thousands of years.

The Gallifrey Foundation is strongly committed to the second option: an option which would ensure we hand over at least one part of the ocean in the shape we received it.  To help the many organizations that share this goal become more effective, the Gallifrey Foundation supports programs that coordinate and maximize cooperation among them.  No single organization can protect the Arctic from development.  Only by all of us working together do we stand a chance of being heard.

Deep Sea Mining

The deep sea contains massive amounts of mineral resources, which mining companies have been eying for decades.  For much of that time legal uncertainties and technological challenges kept the deep sea out of commercial reach, but with every metal price increase and every technological breakthrough the prospect of deep sea mining inches closer to reality.

Mining the deep seabed without a thorough understanding of the environmental impact is a disturbing prospect.  The Gallifrey Foundation is committed to helping bring this issue to the forefront with a dual motive: making sure the public at large is properly informed about the ramifications and ensuring that, if and when mining proceeds, the environmental impact is properly accounted for.

The Gallifrey Foundation has supported this objective through the Marine Program Officer position it funds at IUCN.  This work has contributed to the IUCN report Deep Seabed Mining: A Rising Environmental Challenge, which provides a thorough examination of the deep-sea and the many issues – legal, political, economic and environmental that are involved in mining it.



  • John Vermilye
  • Antoinette Vermilye
  • Luc Cuyvers
  • Alexis McGivern

John Vermilye

A graduate of Harvard University and alumnus of the London Business School, John’s career has been built around the airline industry. He is the owner and Chairman of Travel Sentry which sets standards for the luggage and airline industry and provides solutions which benefit passengers, airlines, airports, security agencies and customs. John has been active in marine conservation issues since co-founding the Mare Nostrum Foundation in the 1980s.

Antoinette Vermilye

Antoinette has specialised on communications, marketing, graphic and interior design. She is passionate about marine conservation issues and has been an active participant in supporting the work of the IUCN, International Union for the Conservation of Nature. This includes a baseline study of marine plastics in the Azores and public awareness and action to reduce marine plastics in the Maldives.

Luc Cuyvers

A graduate of New College, Luc earned his Ph.D in Marine Policy from the University of Delaware. He is the author of several books on marine issues and produced a number of significant documentaries on ocean topics, including he Blue Revolution, Sea Power and Setting Sail. Aside from his media work, he is an Associate Professor at the Netherlands Maritime University, where he teaches a graduate course on Ocean Management and Marine Policy.

Alexis McGivern

Alexis earned her MA in International Relations from the University of St. Andrews. She is a Marine Programme Officer at the IUCN in a position funded by the Gallifrey Foundation. Amongst other Gallifrey projects she specializes in plastics issues, especially closing the tap and promoting zero waste and sustainability.

John Vermilye