The Power of Community! Over 5,000 Pieces of Litter Collected on MLK Shoreline!


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On MLK Day, Oakland Tech interns joined over 60 community members in a clean up of the Shoreline. Save the Bay started the day with some education on stormwater run-off, effects of litter on wildlife, a lot more that gave great context for why we were there in the first place.

Interns worked with the community by collected the data of the litter that was being picked up. Their was a wide range of people, and interns enjoyed being able to interact with so many individuals that care about a cause that they have been working so hard on.

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Data displayed from the MLK Clean Up

Over 5,000 pieces of litter was collected in a span of about 2 hours. The shoreline went from being COVERED in trash to being a spotless stretch of beautiful habitat for critters.

Here is what our interns had to say about the day.. 

Raymond helps a young volunteer safely flag off an area of glass

“It was unfortunate that we were unable to pick up the bigger pieces of trash further in the bay because of the tide levels. However, I was really happy to see that even kids (just in elementary school) are involved with beautifying nature now.” – Raymond

“I feel that today we made a lot of progress in cleaning the bay. However, I feel we could have used methods like using nets to get trash that was further out. Also I think it’s smart that a lot of people where here because when we go around the bay cleaning trash we miss some trash but then other groups go around and pick it up. Also, when I was walking back through the trails it felt really good to see the ground with no trash, like it felt like we made a real difference.” – Tyea

“There was way more trash then i thought there would be and it was cool to see little kids be involved in making a change and a difference in our environment and they thought it was fun so it’s good to know that they may share that with others and things like that” – Asha

“it was a really cool experience and it helped me realize a lot of things, however i got fluids on me from the bag which was very unpleasant” – Jade

“It was really eye opening to see how much trash there was everywhere and how much litter was everywhere. There’s so much that could hurt wildlife. It was also fun to interact with the kids and talk to them.” – Ruby

“This morning started out really cold, but as it progressed I got warmer. Moreover, the time went by faster and faster the more we got into the work, because we picked up so much trash and covered a lot of ground.” – Kamilah
“I think that in the beginning is was hard to collect data because of the little kids that kept on not calling out the trash. After I moved groups, it became easier because the people were really good at calling out stuff and keeping me informed.” – Jose
Ro’e collecting data for his group of young volunteers

“It was fun to spend time with nice people from the community. The amount of trash was sad but the amount of people who showed up to help was uplifting” – Ro’e

“I think it was fun to pick up trash and record it with other people outside of school. Sometimes it was challenging to get some trash and clothes. My legs are cold and wet which sucks but the whole experience was a lot of fun. Ready to do it again.” -Petteri

Daisy with handfuls of litter

“In the beginning I was really sleepy and it was cold but after we started walking and really got into it, it was really nice. It was cool to be outside and I had a good time overall. My group was really nice and we found a lot of surprising stuff. We laughed and joked around a lot and I had a good time.” – Daisy

“MLK day was fun but it felt like the people picking up trash were doing a lot more to help even if that wasn’t the case” -Ryoji

“I thought today was very effective. My group member and I worked really well together. There was good communication during the day which allowed us to track and pick up a lot of trash. I was surprised with what we found. There was a lot of styrofoam which I did not think was used that often. One thing that I struggled with was trying to characterize some of the items we found. Overall, it was good day and I think we made a lot of progress. 😊 ” – Sophia

“I liked hearing about others talk about their opinions on how we can improve our habits. One of the people we talked to talked about her honeymoon where she and her husband were walking down the beach and she’d just pick up trash and she could tell that it came from a variety of different places. It was bizarre to imagine that a pile of trash can actually come from a number of different places” -Angela

“Throughout today’s event, I spent most of my time with two specific people and Angela. I had many flashbacks of when I had attended this event last year, and had clearly remember most of the event that happened. While we were picking up trash and recording our data, they shared many stories with us on the topic of trash and litter in the ocean. I think it was a nice day to come out to volunteer, but it would’ve been nicer without the cold weather.” – Suzanne


” I loved the woman I worked with, they were so positive and sweet. One woman went into the water with her shoes on! Impressive. ” – CoCo
Thanks for reading! If you want to learn more about our data collection, check it out for yourself HERE ! Thank you Save the Bay !
Posted in WAP

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