Dia Brown essay

“The sky’s the limit gang,” that’s us. Crochet for the Bay brings environmentalism to the Chesapeake Bay community. Since many in my area rely on the Chesapeake Bay for recreation and for their livelihoods, yet don’t even know key issues destroying our bay like eutrophication, I decided it was a necessity to inform my community.

When we officially started operating in 2014, my freshman year, we never had to think if it was possible; we dove in. To be self-sufficient, we create hand-made items to sell at events. This allows us to do projects we want to do rather than what funders might want us to do—and with a team of creative, driven high schoolers there are plenty of incredible ideas that get turned into action.

Our initiative has two steps: Get people aware, then get them to care. At each event, we have gone to since 2014, we have displayed information about the bay as well as our items, so that when someone walks in to purchase an item from us, they also can learn the facts. People love to buy quality items where their money goes to a purpose. Though not every customer decides to hop on board and actively work to help the bay, they walk out of our booth a little more informed and still have made a difference by opening their minds… and their wallets. Since the operation is run by high schoolers who don’t have bills to pay, the money made gets to go entirely towards saving the bay. With this money, with our spirits, we get people to care. Some of our action includes, but is not limited to beach sweeps, drain painting, and funding for student research. By creating a more informed and active community, we are giving the bay a better shot at survival.

As an environmental Non-Profit, Earth Day is a big deal to us. Each year we have been more extravagant with our celebrations. This past year we decided to dedicate an entire week to celebrating the earth. As we were planning out the days, we became stumped on how we were going to get more people to come. No one could seem to find an answer! We left the meeting with a schedule, but still feeling defeated about our lack of promotional plans. I went to track practice that afternoon and found my answer.

Our team needed some extra cash for another bus for the away meet, so our head coach decided to raffle off prizes sponsored by local businesses to get the money. This was exactly what we needed for our earth day event! If we created buzz about a raffle on some of our pricier hand -made items, it would surely bring in new faces. After pitching this to the Crochet for the Bay team with a lot of approval, we began marketing our raffle. In promoting our brand this move also promoted our cause. We got more people involved in our initiatives to save the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

It’s always great to see a positive outcome to the work we are doing. The fact that was a success was another testimony of how starting this Non-Profit was worthwhile. I am grateful for all the moments I share with my team, and will be able to continue sharing with my team as we get more funds through events like earth week. We will continue doing raffles in the future so that we do not have to raffle of the Chesapeake Bay’s future.

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