Candice Anvari staff writer
From surfing waves on vacation in Mexico to, unexpectedly, finding a passion for saving California beaches and oceans, Junior Steven Hoorfar started the club Blue Rock Beach Society at school to exercise his love for the environment and to bring about a change, no matter the significance. With worsening environmental conditions, student leaders are taking action to bring about change both inside and outside of school. Hoorfar is not alone in his efforts on campus; senior Ava Dillard has also become an advocate for environmentally friendly habits.
Dillard used Service Learning as an outlet for her ideas on how to affect change and make a move toward a “greener” school. The current events such as global warming, deforestation, animal harm and actions taken by other schools inspired her to take action at Beverly.
“I’m inspired by Greta Thunburg. She’s the sweetest girl that strikes on Fridays to show her activism, and so I wanted to take that kind of activism and bring it at our school,” Dillard said.
As of right now, Dillard and her Service Learning group are starting a movement to reduce the school’s unnecessary plastic usage. She would prefer to start the movement in the cafeteria, which uses a lot of plastic daily.
“One thing we want to do in the cafeteria is to take the materials that we use for all of the lunches and look to use less plastic or other biodegradable things,” Dillard said. “We’re getting in contact with the district offices where they have people that are a part of that [cafeteria material usage].”
Dillard and her group plan on putting up posters and possibly bringing in guest speakers to raise awareness of the environmental issue. They also hope to implement water bottle refill stations to encourage students to stop using plastic water bottles and bring their own water bottles from home to refill at school when needed.
Dillard and her Service Learning group are not the only environmental activists that have contributed to Beverly so far this year. Hoorfar’s main goal, which he hopes to accomplish by the time he graduates, is to raise awareness of the issues that threaten California’s beaches and to host frequent beach clean-ups.
“I’ve always loved the beach. I knew that I really liked going to beaches and I want to do everything I can to help protect them,” Hoorfar said.
Hoorfar’s club also works with local restaurants. In the near future, they plan on doing a clean-up and fundraiser at Venice Beach to support cleanlier beaches and programs that can help clean the oceans.
In addition to Hoorfar and Dillard’s environmental activism, individual students have made lifestyle changes to limit their carbon footprint. Sophomore Juliana Finazzo wants to be a marine biologist, so environmental awareness is something she values.
“In order to make even a little bit of change, I’ve stopped eating beef and I don’t use plastic water bottles or straws as much anymore,” Finazzo said. “It makes me sad because living things are being terribly affected by our carelessness, but I think that lifestyle changes can bring about a positive change in the long run.”