Year-Long Volunteer Recovery Action Plan Released Today
HIGHLANDS, NJ - Clean Ocean Action (COA) held a teleconference today to announce the 2013 “Waves of Action” program, which will respond to the impacts of Superstorm Sandy and help improve and protect the marine environment. COA is engaging its network of organizations, businesses, citizens, and municipalities to help coastal communities throughout New Jersey and New York in need over the long term with volunteer action.
“Recovery will be a very long and challenging road,” said Cindy Zipf, Executive Director of Clean Ocean Action. “It is essential to rebuild better with environmental stewardship and resiliency and provide resources and support to keep the momentum going,” Zipf added.
Future Waves of Action days in 2013 will progress with the needs of communities and will keep the momentum going for continued improvement of the shore through debris clean ups, sustainable development plans, and projects to improve water quality.
“Even though it has been over two months since the Hurricane, there are still very real needs in many communities, and we will work to meet those needs for as long as it takes,” said Zach McCue, Clean Ocean Action Citizen Action Coordinator.
“Rebuilding Sea Bright will take a sustained effort for a couple of years. Partnering with Clean Ocean Action for regular volunteer days provides additional resources that will be very important to the long term recovery of the town,” added Frank Lawrence, Sea Bright Volunteer Coordinator, who participated in the teleconference on Thursday.
Waves of Action For The Shore: Month-to-Month (See “Waves of Action Overview” PDF attached for more details)
January 19 – Clean-Up, Clean-Out
February 23– Helping Hands at Home
March 23 – Bringing Back our Ecosystems
April 27 – 28th Annual Beach Sweeps
May 18 - Back to the Beach
June 22, July 20, August 17 - Healthy Habitats, Water Conservation and Energy Efficiency
September 21 – Education for the Future and Long-Term Recovery
October 19 – Fall Beach Sweeps
November 13-15 – Education for the Future
December 7 – Waves of Action Conference and Awards
The Wave of Action on Saturday, January 19, is in unison with Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend, which has become a national weekend centered on service.
“Many of our projects from December are registered again in January, since Waves of Action is the only clean-up effort that some parks and beaches have been able to have since Sandy. That said, there are also many new locations where people can help,” said Tavia Danch, Clean Ocean Action Education Coordinator.
A number of organizations and municipalities have been involved in not only the planning of, but are also participating in, Clean Ocean Action’s Wave of Action on January 19. These groups include: President’s Inaugural Committee, National Park Service, Bayshore Waterfront Park Affiliation, Monmouth County Park System, HOPE worldwide, Borough of Sea Bright, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Wall High School Environmental Club, AmeriCorps Watershed Ambassadors, Red Bank Friends of Maple Cove, United Methodist Committee of Relief, Alliance for a Living Ocean, Beach Haven West Community Association, Surfrider Foundation, South Jersey Chapter, Borough of Ocean Gate and Natural Resource Protective Association.
Over 1,200 people have already signed up to help to clean out homes, neighborhoods, parks, beaches, and waterways at 23 locations throughout New York and New Jersey, including Atlantic City, Long Beach Island, Sea Bright, Asbury Park, Sandy Hook, New Jersey, and Staten Island and Jones Beach, New York.
“Before Hurricane Sandy, many of the people interested in cleaning up New Jersey's beaches were environmentalists,” noted Lindsey Van Zile, Toms River South High School Senior and Waves of Action Project Leader. “Now, with the help of Waves of Action program, we can all come together and create solutions to major environmental problems and even help those in need,” she added.
For more details about each month’s Wave of Action, please refer to the “Waves of Action Overview” PDF attached. For more information about the Waves of Action program, visit www.fortheshore.org or contact Clean Ocean Action at (732) 872-0111.
Clean Ocean Action (www.CleanOceanAction.org) is a regional, broad-based coalition of 135 conservation, environmental, fishing, boating, diving, student, surfing, women's, business, service, and community groups with a mission to improve and protect coastal and ocean water quality. For over 25 years, COA has been actively engaged in ocean management to ensure a vibrant, diverse, economically robust ecosystem through citizen education, advocacy, and public involvement.