Sustainable Coastlines Hawai’i launched a new K-12 educational program in 2016 to continue raising awareness about plastic pollution “marine debris” in Hawaii’s public schools and the community. Our program is designed to educate K-12 students, teachers, public and private sector employees, and the general public about the detrimental impacts of global plastic pollution, with a focus on local, achievable solutions. In 2016, SCH educated a total of 7,809 individuals through our free K-12 program, outreach events, and public movie nights. These numbers do not include individuals attending our beach cleanups but are a measure of our education and outreach efforts besides beach clean-ups.
SCH collaborated with 22 public schools on O’ahu, Maui, and Moloka’i, 4 private schools and 1 community college (Kapiolani Community College) on O’ahu. We also partnered with other educational non-profits: Kokua Hawai’i Foundation, 5Gyres, Surfrider Oahu and Maui Chapter, Hawai’i Wildlife Fund, Malama Maui Nui, Malama Pūpūkea-Waimea, For Ewa’Pono, Youth Challenge, Na Kama Kai, and Sea Turtle Camp. To reach out to the public, SCH collaborated with public and private organizations: Department of Transportation, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Kahala Mall (Keiki Day), HECO, Bank of Hawai’i, Turtle Bay, World Surf League, Van’s Surf, North Shore Marketplace, Kona Brewing Co., Vans, Hurley, and Waikiki Sheraton. Collaborations with different organizations has helped us reach a wider demographic and enabled us to foster environmental stewardship in the community.
Overall Individuals Educated in 2016: SCH educated 7,809 individuals in 2016. Our K-12 program represented almost 78% of individuals reached, public events accounted for 10%, movie nights accounted for 7% and community presentations accounted for 5% of individuals educated this year.
Breakdown of Individuals Educated
Our K-12 program grew and expanded greatly in 2016. We collaborated with 22 public schools, 4 private schools and one community college to educate 6,063 students across the state. Since SCH is based on O’ahu, most of the effort was focused in schools on O’ahu. When SCH conducts beach-cleanups on neighboring islands, we organize 1 week of educational outreach in schools and the community. In 2016, we organized beach clean-ups and educational outreach on Maui (January) and Moloka’i (August).
Breakdown of K-14 Program: SCH educated 6,063 students in 2016. Majority of students educated belonged to the elementary (50%) age group, followed by middle school (36%), high school (13%) and community college (1%).
Breakdown of Participating Schools
Breakdown of school/student-groups and number of students educated by age-group on O’ahu, Maui, and Molokai. A total of 31 public schools, private schools, and youth groups participated in our program.
Participating DOE Schools on O’ahu, Maui, and, Moloka’i
Overall, there has been an increase in the number of students and institutions that participated in our program. The K-12 program was delivered in two ways: 1) in-classroom presentations or 2) lessons conducted at the Education Station. The SCH Education Station is a mobile classroom that can be transported from school to school. It is parked on campus for 2-3 weeks and operated during regular school hours.
SCH was invited to attend public and private events on O’ahu. These events required staff to set-up informational booths with 1-2 activities to engage the public. In 2016, SCH collaborated with Best of Honolulu, HECO, Kahala Mall, Bank of Hawai’i, Kona Brewing Co., and Waikiki Sheraton to reach out to locals and visitors. Our team educated 825 individuals through this effort.
SCH hosted 8 movie nights at various locations on O’ahu. Movie nights were free for the public and were organized to bring the community together in a fun yet engaging way. By utilizing our Education Station to screen movies, we were able to engage 565 people this year.
Movie night events were attended by 565 people this year
SCH staff members were invited to give talks at public or private gatherings. We collaborated with the Department of Transportation (Honolulu Harbor), Department of Education (Wa’a talks for DOE teachers), WSL, and Van’s Surf to educate 326 people.
The SCH team worked hard to expand its educational efforts in 2016. We created a core team of educators and were able to reach a greater number of K-12 students and community members.
Our future goals are to:
1) develop additional K-14 educational programs;
2) create STEM-based research opportunities for high school students;
3) create surveys to measure the impact of our educational program using pre-/post-quizzes;
4) expand our public outreach by participating in public events, giving presentations, and organizing movie-nights, along with beach-cleanups; and
5) collaborate with educational institutions in Hawai’i and abroad to reach broader groups of audiences.
By raising awareness about plastic pollution and offering achievable solutions, we can create positive changes in Hawai’i. But while we raise awareness, we need to continue to clean. Join us in 2017 at one of the many cleanups across the state and if you are a parent or administrator, reach out to Mugdha Flores our Director of Education and Outreach. We can come to your school, your community group, or your office to help you and your colleagues create clean beaches right where you’re at.