In addition to teaching at Fort Bragg High School, we hosted a conference call from WGSS Oceans. This is a Canadian group of young students who are trying to spread the word on plastic pollution and participate in educational efforts of their own. As of last count they have educated 54 out of their 100 student goal and are working hard to keep spreading the word.
Our work in the area led us to a presentation with the local rotary chapter. Events like this are critical to helping us reach different generations of people and change the perceptions of communities as a whole. Presenting to the rotary was provided us a way to access some much needed funding and helped us stir interest in a group of community leaders that have the power to make a significant impact in their community.
Our first fundraiser on the road, we worked with Hopworks Urban Brewery in Portland, Oregon to host their FIRST EVER Community Tap Night. This event was targeted at engaging the community and bringing in some funds to help support our work.
Because Hopworks is a certified B-Corp and part of the 1% For The Planet, we were ecstatic to work with and learn more about the operations of the Brewery. The Hopworks staff were awesome and led us along a brewery tour. After the tour we set up a table and spend the night getting people some good information about plastic pollution over a few rounds of delicious beer!
After an awesome day of teaching with North Beach Junior Senior High we set a clean-up for the following morning. We launched the invite after we had seen the amount of trash that piled up on Ocean Shores’ Damon Point. A protected bird sanctuary for more than half the year, we had seen items ranging from entire boat hulls, to plastic water bottles, and even micro-plastics littering the beach. With 24hrs notice we created a clean-up with nearly 50 volunteers.
90 minutes after the clean up started, fueled by coffee and donuts, we managed to remove 512 pounds of debris. Much of the debris we found had been carried in by the recent king tides. These items included 1/2 of that boat hull, multiple tires, countless water bottles, lids, firework debris, fishing line, rope, net, snack wrappers, and of course micro-plastics.
Donation of supplies and communication of the event was facilitated by the outstanding community of Ocean Shores and by North Beach teachers Travis Cluckey and Vernon Johnny Bruni. After a morning of hard work, we left the Ocean Shores community thriving and excited for the next beach clean-up that had been organized by one of North Beach Junior Senior High’s own students. All we can say to this community and school is Mahalo Nui Loa!
This is our Mobile Education Station. To continue educating up and down the coast we needed something that would be eye-catching, classic, functional, and cheap. What better thing to use for mobile teaching than a School Bus! This 1998 BlueBird Handy Bus is one of a kind and supports our day to day operations. By REUSING an old vehicle we can give new life to something that would have otherwise made its way into a landfill or pick and pull. Among others, our long term goals include making this mobile education station more environmentally friendly by switching to biodiesel, and creating a space on the side of the bus for projections and outdoor education.