Even if you never have the chance to see or touch the ocean, the ocean touches you with every breath you take, every drop of water you drink, every bite you consume. Everyone, everywhere is inextricably connected to and utterly dependent upon the existence of the sea.
― Sylvia A. Earle
Between studying, participating in sports, preparing for the SAT/ACTs, and much more, many high schoolers still make time to be active members in service clubs. Yet, despite the number of high schoolers making these service-oriented choices, there was still an opportunity missing regarding something that covers 75 percent of the earth.
For billions of people, a healthy ocean means jobs, food, and protection. Over 90 percent of those employed by fisheries work in small-scale operations in developing countries. Additionally, we consume products from the ocean daily. As inhabitants of planet Earth, it’s imperative that we care for and preserve our oceans. That’s exactly what one of the newest service-oriented clubs at SAS, Blue Planet Initiative (BPI) plans to do.
Founder and resident of BPI, John Tsao, created the club focused primarily on marine conservation efforts. The club was founded on two principal motives. First, because of the distance separating ocean and land, conservation efforts are sometimes extremely difficult. BPI hopes to help the global movement by providing more pairs of hands. This contrasts with other types of conversation movements such as wildlife conservation, where impacting something as close to our backyards can prove to be useful. The second reason can be attributed to the focus of environmental activism regarding terrestrial and marine habitats lacking clarity. BPI hopes to clear this ambiguity regarding marine conservation.
And while BPI is unique in terms of other clubs at this school, it has a close relationship with other conservation efforts at SAS. To ensure that club goals don’t overlap, Tsao has made sure that BPI’s goal is clear and distinguished in terms of defining reforms and solutions to ensure effectiveness.
BPI is unique in that it places greater emphasis on action-based, out-of-school approaches towards service. Tsao states: “It allows our members to truly practice the skills of critical thinking and planning, exposing them to the problem firsthand. Our concept focuses on the inclusiveness of all parties and awareness advocacy”.
BPI's impact will be subjected to and defined by the faith and courage of the members and their leaders. Only then can their aspirations be accomplished.
It is important to recognize that great historical schools stand on the shoulders of giants. The work we have been able to accomplish recently is only possible because of the equally impressive work of leaders and faculty over many generations before us.
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