This week’s Blackbaud Nonprofit of the Match is Charleston Surfrider. Surfrider Foundation is a non-profit environmental organization dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s oceans, waves and beaches for all people, through conservation, activism, research and education (C.A.R.E).
The Charleston Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation concentrates on keeping our beaches and waterways free of trash to keep the Lowcountry beautiful, for your enjoyment. There are numerous ways for Charleston residents to get involved and volunteer with the Surfrider Foundation including beach sweeps, marsh sweeps, and monofilament recycling.
Surfrider hosts several beach sweeps throughout the year. Check their Facebook page for the latest information. During the Fall months (or as needed) Surfrider organizes marsh sweeps with local schools. It’s a great way for school children to get a close look at how much garbage works its way into the marsh from the roadside. The hours the students spend doing the sweeps can count towards their required school service hours.
Surfrider assists the SCDNR in their monofilament recycling program by caring for and emptying the monofilament recycling stations at the Folly Beach boat landing and the Sol Legare boat landing. When the containers are emptied, the old fishing line is sent to DNR who then sends it off to be recycled into plastic fishing lures.
As a response to increased plastic pollution in the coastal zone and ocean gyres, Surfrider Foundation started an Ocean Friendly Restaurants program. The primary goal of this initiative is to eliminate EPS foam foodware (aka Styrofoam). EPS foam foodware (cups, plates, ‘clamshells’, etc.) is a top item found at Surfrider beach cleanups. The Charleston Chapter of Surfrider is partnering with local Ocean Friendly Restaurants to bring this incredible program to the Lowcountry.
Certified Ocean Friendly Restaurants follow the following criteria: they do not use expanded polystyrene, they follow proper recycling practices, and they use only reusable tableware for on-site dining, only providing utensils for to-go food upon request. If you or someone you know is interested in becoming an Ocean Friendly Restaurant partner, please contact Jana Davis at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about Surfrider Charleston, stop by and see them on Wednesday night!