By Esmeralda Suarez, President of Lawndale Heal the Bay Club
In February, Lawndale High School’s Heal the Bay Club picked up trash from the Dockweiler Beach shore as they completed the first of three cleanups in the Adopt-a-Beach Program.
Our club had its first beach cleanup at Dockweiler Beach back in February, where the club members picked up trash on the shore from 9-11 A.M.
There was plenty of trash to cleanup at our first cleanup because earlier in the week it had rained which causes runoff pollution. Several types of trash wound up on or near the shore after traveling there through the storm drain system.
First, we all got into groups of 3, then I dispersed the data cards, pencil, gloves, and 1 trash bag per group. After, we all started to pick up trash, which resulted in finding random rare items that we did not expect to find; the peculiar things we found were 2 huge alcoholic bottles, flip flops, hair, and sadly, a dead crow. After the cleanup we all calculated our data, and recorded it so that it may be entered into Heal the Bay’s Marine Debris Database.
As club members filled their bags with trash, they were amazed at the fact that all this plastic could have been in the ocean if it weren’t them making a difference. How it made my club members feel is as if they were making a change.
One of the club members named Daisy Rodriguez stated, “Seeing all this plastic near the beach is so sad, but being able to pick it up and not let it end up in the ocean makes me feel as if I am contributing to the earth, and saving sea animals.” Overall most club members commented that beach cleanups change a human’s perspective of how they view a piece of trash, they feel as if they help out, they are making a difference for the environment and its ecosystems.
What the club learned as a whole is that we should be more cautious of where our trash winds up, to properly dispose of trash, and to be more eco-friendly and use less plastic. As well as to help reduce pollution.
Overall, Lawndale High School’s Heal the Bay Club, could not have been more successful, slowly we are bringing environmental awareness, and contributing change one step at a time.