After working with Surfrider Foundation and Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii I was motivated to do something different than the status quo knowing our oceans, my playground needed help. Although I was hired at a Solar Energy Company out of school I still felt I needed to do more. Knowing the impacts of the work Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii had I was motivated to start a West Coast operation with my brother Nick. That lead us to purchase an old school bus, converted it to a mobile education station/ home and set out to teach 10,000 k-12 youth about plastic pollution and the impacts on marine environments. In a nutshell we teach kids about plastic pollution and its impacts while motivating them to be the change they want to see in this world! To us this trip is an incredible opportunity to reach communities of underserved populations and bring them critical education and awareness that will help shift the long term policies that protect our oceans. It also provides us an excellent opportunity to surf and explore the west coast far beyond what we have seen before.
At this point we can teach grades from kindergarten through entry level college courses. Our goal is to reach 10,000 students this academic year and grow this operation for next year. We are currently within 350 students of achieving this goal. Our education leaves students with proactive solutions for how they can be more conscious of how our choices impact our environments. We push to leave the students feeling empowered to take action and understand that “individual action affected upon millions equals results.”
The driving motivation behind this work is that policy change happens as a combination of awareness and responsibility from those in positions of power. To save our oceans we need to act fast. Our oceans are responsible for 2 out of every 3 breaths we take. By 2050 it is predicted that not only will our coral reefs be entirely gone, but that there will be more plastic in the oceans than fish. These are sobering facts. The change is not going to come from the top down but rather the bottom up and the future generations that we teach are this change.
This summer after teaching 10,000 students we will continue our work with an affiliate organization to Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii called Parley for the Oceans in Canada with the national parks volunteers doing cleanups and environmental education. Although lakes and rivers are what we see primarily here, these are some of the most important individuals to educate because lakes and rivers all eventually drain to the oceans carrying any debris from upstream down into our oceans. Coming into next fall Nick and I want to teach more than 10,000 students maybe 100,000 but are still working on possible ways to do so and make this dream happen!
Vuori has hands down been the most comfortable clothing I have ever worn! Whether in the ocean, at the beach, doing yoga or driving to schools to teach, Vuori has kept me so comfortable I don’t think I can take it off. We are beyond stoked to have Vuori’s support and look forward to putting their clothes to the test in Canada! It is good to see more apparel companies taking action to work with upcycling procedures and materials. For an industry that is traditionally so hard on the environment, Vuori seems to be taking steps in the right direction to set a new standard for how apparel companies consider the impacts of their products. I love Vuori and am beyond excited to represent them into the future.