On Saturday (Sept. 15), a group of more than 20 volunteers led by Jesuit High School's Environmental Club helped better the community by participating in the Hillsborough River & Coastal Cleanup.
For three hours Saturday morning, the volunteers walked along the Courtney Campbell Causeway to pick up trash and debris, logging and coordinating their efforts on a data collection app called Clean Swell. Much of the trash they collected was found in the rocky barrier along the Tampa Bay shoreline, so volunteers carefully negotiated the slippery rocks and areas in-between to remove any garbage trapped within the crevices.
Environmental Club members who participated on Sept. 15 include: Andrew Sumner ’19, Max Damm ’19, Nate Polite ’21, Daniel Prashanth Hevia ’21, Carson Jeffords ’21, Patrick Smith ’22, Cole Patrick ’21, William Brooker ’21, Jack Rodriguez ’21, Colin Lawrence ’21, Vincent Girgenti ’20, Daniel Marrero ’20, and Tommy Little ’22. Additionally, club members Xavier Aya-ay '22 and John Paul Llanos '22 participated in the cleanup at a different location. Several students outside of the Environmental Club came to aid the cleanup effort, including Jacob Tauber ’19, Cameron Trias ’22, Jack Stanislow ’19, William Rodriguez ’19, Don Freund ’19, and Jack Cooper ’19.
The trash collected this year included beverage cans and bottles, plastic bags and lids, straws, cigarette butts, fishing line, and cell phones. The volunteers broke into six groups and headed in different directions to pick up litter. Each group collected about 50 pounds of trash.
The cleanup was part of a major event, the International Coastal Cleanup, and was sponsored locally by Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful. Jesuit's Environmental Club participates in the Coastal Cleanup annually.
The club, led by moderator Vindri Gajadhar, has several more clean-up events scheduled for later this year, including the post-Gasparilla Parade Cleanup in January and the Great American Cleanup in April.
The Environmental Club is ubiquitous on campus, as it collects paper recycling in all school buildings every Friday. The club has plans to ramp up Jesuit's green initiatives in the future, including the implementation of a plastic bottle recycling program.
Please view the photo slideshow below from the Sept. 15 cleanup: