My son came home last week telling me his Social Studies teacher assigned a community service project. They are required to volunteer an hour of their time for the next four months.
I told him, “Great! You already volunteer at church to work with the first graders every Sunday. You’ve got more than enough hours.”
It turns out, the kids need to start something that they haven’t already been doing. At first, I was annoyed by that rule… then I realized that my kid (and I) can give an additional hour a month to help a cause in need.
I directed my son to REI.com because they have a link on their site that can connect you with a variety of volunteer opportunities. While I gave him the freedom to choose a job, I was really hoping that he would choose an environmental cause. I was stoked when he chose a beach cleanup project!
The beach cleanup was hosted by Orange County Coastkeeper. Every second Saturday of the month, CoastKeeper holds a beach cleanup to collect debris. They are also conducting research to monitor debris that may be washing up from the tsunami that occurred in Japan back in 2011.
Last Saturday morning we showed up at Huntington State Beach, at Tower 11 with our buckets and pinchers. I could think of worse places to spend a Saturday morning… it was a gorgeous day in Surf City. While we were out there, we also met the cool guys of Coastal Playground, a clothing brand that helps to promote coastal environmental awareness.
My son and I had a great time helping out. Surprisingly, we only picked up one cigarette but. We did, however pick up over 120 pieces of plastic and over 140 pieces of styrofoam!
Altogether, there were about 75 volunteers and we collected over 120 pounds of trash. Not bad for an hour’s time.
Next month, my wife and daughter will join us in the cleanup. It will be on my birthday weekend. It sounds like a great way to spend my birthday… seriously! My family and I enjoy the beach so much so it only makes sense to give back once in a while to keep it beautiful!
How do you serve your community?