On a typical Saturday, the Valpo Surf Project group can be found at the beach in Con Con surfing. But Saturday, November 19, we brought the group to clean a local beach at the foot of Playa Ancha, called Carvallo. This beach isn’t suited for surfing, nor is it very frequented by swimmers due to it’s exposure to the open ocean which bring big swells that crash on rock outcrops. Although, it is a popular spot for locals to spend an afternoon–a small refuge from the city that is nearby. The weather has been improving here, and it was very notable that this beach has been more frequently trafficked and was in need of a clean.

We arrived at the beach around 11 am, equipped with trash bags, gloves and the energy of the team to spend a couple of hours giving back to improve a beautiful space in the community that we are all a part of.

We had our students separate into groups of 3-4 people to work together to collect trash in different parts of the beach and try to fill as many bags as possible. The kids worked very hard and turned it into a mini-competition to see who could fill the most bags.

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After weighing all of our bags, the total weight came out to be 117 kilos! After the clean, we ate lunch and a few kids mentioned how they felt after having cleaned the beach. One of our students, Alexandra, 10 years old, said, “I feel good after the beach cleans because a lot of people don’t think about doing things like this. Everyone comes to the beach and a lot of people leave their trash behind and don’t think about it. That makes the beach dirty and less enjoyable for the others that also want to enjoy it. I can notice a difference now in how the beach looks compared to when we got here, and I feel good that I helped to make something more beautiful.”

At the end of the day, we enjoyed the sun for a bit and explored some of the tide pools at the beach. It was a great success that will surely be repeated in the future!

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