More than just rusty bikes are washing up on shores around UCSB. A new opportunity has beached itself in the form of trash worth $50 or more, once it is collected by student organizations armed with a complimentary disposable camera.
The Shoreline Preservation Fund (SPF) has launched a Beach Sweep Program that offers student groups registered with Associated Students and the Office of Student Life money for cleaning beaches between Goleta Beach and Ellwood. The program was designed to both help student groups earn money and provide a community service.
“The idea of the Beach Sweep Program was to get more groups involved in activities to help preserve the beach,” SPF Grants Manager J. Scott Bull said.
Five participants in the cleanup must clean for two hours to receive $50, and SPF will award an additional $50 for every five participants up to a maximum of $250. Groups are responsible for providing cleaning supplies and responsible waste disposal. The SPF will fund 10 groups per quarter, but groups can only participate in one beach cleanup per quarter.
Student groups have already shown interest in the program and Bull said he expects increased participation as word travels. No groups have participated in a funded cleanup yet, since the SPF made the application for funding available on Tuesday.
Due to budget cuts in A.S., it is becoming increasingly difficult for groups to get funds, according to Pilipino Culture Night Coordinator Charlene Sarmiento, who was interested in having her group participate in the program. She said the Kapatirang Pilipino Club received $2,200 two years ago from A.S. but received about half that amount last year, so the club needs a new way to make up for the deficit.
“We learned from last year that we can’t completely depend on A.S. for money,” Sarmiento said.
The program will be especially beneficial to clubs like Kapatirang Pilipino, which does not charge dues for membership, Sarmiento said. Other fundraising techniques include food sales and letter-writing campaigns, which are not always as lucrative, she said.
“We are just trying to look at creative ways to get money,” Sarmiento said.
Particular beaches targeted for cleanup are Depressions Beach on the north side of campus and the inside cove at Devereux, Bull said. In bigger beaches such as these, the trash accumulates more than on narrow beaches like those near Isla Vista, where the water comes all the way up to the cliffs and washes away the trash.
“There is so much trash on the beach; it is a constant and needs attention,” Bull said.
The SPF will supply groups that participate in cleanups with a disposable camera to document the trash collection. Bull hopes to create a display in the UCen to show beach conditions around Isla Vista.
SPF gets its funding through a student lock-in fee of $3 per quarter, which took effect two years ago after students passed an initiative. The application for campus groups to participate in a funded cleanup is posted on the SPF website .
“SPF was created to enhance the integrity of our coast,” Bull said. “The intention is to reach out to as many groups as possible.”