Virginia Beach is a coastal city. We enjoy the Chesapeake Bay as well as the Atlantic Ocean. Ocean pollution starts on land and our city works hard to get the message out that it is up to it's citizens to do their part to keep our waterways clean so we can enjoy the coastal lifestyle. We have thousands of volunteers participate in the annual Clean the Bay Day event along with several groups sponsoring beach cleanups every month.
Sustainable Actions in Your Community: We have an Ecology Club at Hermitage Elementary consisting of 5th graders. The Chesapeake Bay is part of our school zone. We have about 4 miles of bay shoreline. It is important to teach our students the importance of the Chesapeake Bay. We sponsor school wide activities such as beach cleanups, plastic free campaigns, oyster restoration, celebrating Earth Day, growing grasslands in the classroom. We are a public school and our students are mostly military connected. These students are with us for a few years, but take the environmental message with them to their next duty station. We are making a difference.
We would like to participate in the parachute program. We have a message to share and this is an impactful way to get noticed.
Sustainable Actions in this Community
My community is my school, Hermitage Elementary.
Our zone includes almost 4 miles of shoreline along the Chesapeake Bay. We have about 65% military connected students who come from all over the country and the world. We have several NATO children at our school.
We have had an ecology club for 4 years although we couldn’t provide one during COVID last year. We still managed to hold social distance cleanups. Families would come to the school to check out a cleanup kits and then pick up trash in their neighborhoods, local parks or the bayfront. It was pretty successful. The kits included reusable bags, gloves and grabbers.
Our eco club has raised oysters to be placed on protected local oyster beds, grown wetlands grasses in the classroom, and created posters to share their message around our school. The club members read books with environmental messages to our younger students. We have created a pledge and hope to teach it to everyone this year to say every Friday before a scheduled cleanup.
Our school has gardens and are growing vegetables and herbs that are used in our scratch made lunches. We will be composting raw fruits and vegetables this year to add to our raised beds.
There is always something fun happening at Hermitage!