Who we are


Our vision is of a world where every person in distress at sea is rescued and treated with dignity. Civil society extends to the seas and so we must uphold principles of humanity.

SOS MEDITERRANEE is a European maritime and humanitarian organization for the rescue of life in the Mediterranean. It was founded by citizens in May 2015 in response to the deaths in the Mediterranean and the failure of the European Union to prevent these deaths.

SOS MEDITERRANEE works as a European association with teams in Germany, France, Italy and Switzerland in a European network, jointly financing and operating the rescue ship Aquarius, which has been in continuous operation since February 2016 in international waters between Italy and Libya. The medical care has been provided by Doctors without Borders since May 2016. Since launching our operation we have welcomed more than 27,000 refugees aboard the Aquarius.



Save lives: rescuing people from distress at sea and providing emergency medical treatment on board.

Protect and assist: medical and psychological care of the refugees on board and connecting to supporting institutions in Europe.

Testify: Give the rescued a voice. Show the many faces of the migration. Inform the European public about the situation of refugees in the Mediterranean and commemorate those that never arrived.


SOS MEDITERRANEE is committed to the following values:




Civil society engagement




SOS MEDITERRANEE is a humanitarian organization based on the respect for human beings and their dignity, without partiality as concerns their nationality or origin, their social belonging, religious belief, political position or ethnic identity.


Faced with repeated shipwrecks of migrants and refugees trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea in order to reach Europe,

Considering that there is no adequate rescue mission in the Mediterranean Sea to help migrants and refugees in distress in an efficient, appropriate and lasting manner.

As citizens convinced that human rights apply to everyone, we are calling for a large-scale mobilization based on civil society coming together to save migrants in the Mediterranean Sea

Download the charter