Freshman Jesus Garcia-Peña and Alejandro Aguilar Chavez picking up trash at Cooley Landing on Sept. 17. (Photo by Michelle Tiburcio)
Freshman Jesus Garcia-Peña and Alejandro Aguilar Chavez picking up trash at Cooley Landing on Sept. 17.

Photo by Michelle Tiburcio

Coastal Cleanup Draws Community Together, Achieves Record Turnout

September 21, 2022

On Sept. 17, nearly 200 families and students gathered at Cooley Landing amid the uncertainty of rain to help pick up trash for the annual Coastal Cleanup, gathering more than 1,300 pounds, a record for Eastside.

Students were handed supplies from Grassroots Ecology, including gloves and a bucket or bags. Many students worked in groups in order to pick up large items like glass and tires, and most importantly, cigarettes, which cause major harm to sea life. Each group tracked the amount of trash they collected.
Grassroots Ecology has been partnering for several years with Eastside for Coastal Cleanup Day for and also provides students with volunteer opportunities and internships throughout the school year and summer.

“Everyone from Eastside is so community oriented in that they ultimately want to give back to the environment, and so I feel like that’s where we tie in,” said Barbara Camacho Garcia, a Grassroots Ecology worker.

The Interact Club organizes Coastal Cleanup participation.
“This year’s turnout was extremely amazing, there were much more families and Eastside students than previous years,” said Interact Club president Uriel Velazquez-Leon.
At the end of the cleanup, Grassroots handed out jar openers and posters as a thank-you for helping protect sea life and the local community.

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