As I rode over Las Virgenes Road into the sun soaked valley, I was reciting what I would get to say to the 350-plus students and faculty of Mariposa School of Global Education.
The amazing students held their 5th Annual Beach Clean-A-Thon fundraiser and field trips April 15-17, which brought them down to the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium for education programs and a chance to help clean our beaches. As the students were learning about the animals off our coast and cleaning up their home, they were also raising funds to support their programs as well as donate to Heal the Bay. So I was there to accept the amazing gift of $2,300 they were presenting to Heal the Bay.
The students raised $23,000 through lemonade stands, video messages, letters and even their own piggy banks. I was welcomed on stage to shouts of “Nick!” from the audience, as they recognized me from their trip a month before. I spoke to them about how wonderful their commitment to the environment is and how they are the key to the future of our planet. When the oversized check presentation occurred (pictured left, courtesy Ziva Santop Photography), I realized I had a problem. I was on a motorcycle. Luckily for me they had a smaller version to fit in my pocket, but either way it was such a joy to accept such a wonderful gift and continue the two-year partnership with Mariposa.
-- Nick Fash
Education Specialist, Heal the Bay's Santa Monica Pier Aquarium