People who do good work don’t always get credit for it, nor do they seek it. There are many unsung volunteers in our midst who quietly and humbly go about serving the community, trying to make this island the best it can be for everyone.
Count the folks at the B-Rad Foundation among those people.
Saturday, the foundation held its largest stewardship coastal cleanup since its formation. Yes, they made a difference. Such projects like this make Kauai better in more ways than one.
“We simply can’t express our level of gratitude to the 200 volunteers who helped collect and remove 4,035.6 pounds of marine debris and rubbish from Kealia Beach, Donkey Beach and the surrounding coastlines,” says Matt Parker, board president of the foundation. “We want to extend a huge mahalo to Kauai Juice Company, Surfrider Foundation Kauai Chapter, Sashamon and his band, South Pacific art by Troy Carney, and Lihue Lopez and the Lopez family for the amazing luau lunch, and to Keith Ketchum for taking photos and video of the day.”
It was almost five years ago that Brad Parker, son of Bill and Gayle Parker and brother of Matt Parker, fell and died while rock-climbing in Yosemite National Park. At age 36 Brad loved the world, but he had a special place in his heart for the sacred Pacific Ocean. So in his absence the Parker family, along with Brad‘s closest friends, started something grand, something that moves with its own solid progression and for all the right reasons.
“The B-Rad Foundation stands for community,” Matt Parker said. “Whatever can rally people behind a cause and bring our ohana closer together is what we do.”
According to its website, “The B-Rad Foundation exists to support youth and their communities by fostering individual empowerment through environmental stewardship, health and adventure programs. We believe in the next generation’s responsibility to embody these principles, and are resolved to make a positive and lasting impact within our communities and for our planet.”
We are fortunate to have them on Kauai.
This is the second year of coordinating a mirrored cleanup effort with the B-Rad Sonoma County Chapter, which also held a beach cleanup on the same day in Northern California.
Momentum has an amazing, inherent quality, in that it continues to move behind the scenes with purpose and relation to the original push.
The 300 volunteers who came out in California collected over 3,000 pounds of marine debris and trash. All in all with the combined efforts to B-Rad Foundation‘s two chapters with the help of over 500 volunteers collected over 7,000 pounds of marine debris and trash from our Pacific shorelines.
“Multiple generations learning from one another, sharing a laugh, supporting and taking a moment to make a meaningful difference,” said Gayle Parker. “The purpose is simple in nature but powerful in meaning.”
Think about the impact of this. Two coastlines, separated by thousands of miles of ocean, yet embracing one another as ohana, and bridging the gap with genuine aloha spirit, was extremely heartfelt and evident.
This is the kind of example we love to see. And the people behind such efforts are the kind who make life better. We thank them for all these did on Saturday, and what they do every day, sharing aloha with a world that so desperately needs it.
The Parkers wish to send a mahalo to all the volunteers who came out to lend a hand. Visit their website at www.b-radfoundation.org for information regarding monthly beach cleanups and events. It has set the date for the next B-Rad fundraiser festival, so mark your calendars now for Aug. 17 at the old Kealia Store.
Let’s keep the legacy and the spirit of Brad Parker alive and well. As it should be.