Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Always a blessing to be back on the Harbor

Hi everyone,

 My name is Andrea Lopes. I am 19 years old and a rising junior at Bridgewater State University. I was born in Cape Verde (country on the West Coast of Africa) and moved to the United States 10 years ago. Ever since then, I have been living in Dorchester. This is my third summer with Save the Harbor / Save the Bay and the first summer as a Lead Harbor Explorer. As you all can see, I love this non-profit organization more and more as I keep returning. Being with this organization has helped me develop as a leader and it has also made me realize the type of individual that I am as I have served thousandths of kids now ever since since my first summer. Whenever I am with all of the wonderful Save the Harbor staffs, they never fail to make me feel like I'm not at home. This is a place that I call home away from home in the summer because it is where I spend most of my time. I have been truly blessed to be a part of this organization because not too many teenagers get to experience what I have experienced and continue to experience with the opportunity I have been given. When I first started working here, I did not know anything about the Harbor or the sea creatures. I remember being scared to hold a crab or not knowing how to cast/work with a fishing rod. After the first few days, I can tell you for sure that I became a "fisherman expert" (something Ms. Ryan would call me). Being able to serve all of these thousandths of kids for 3 summers now from different communities and teaching them about the harbor only makes me feel much better.

First week  last summer out on Spectacle Island with All Access Boston Harbor

I had a spectacular week during orientation because this was actually the first time that I was able to attend all 4 days. Being at Georges Island on Wednesday was amazing with a lot of the new summer staffs this year. Being able to teach the other staffs fishing techniques and how to cast a rod as soon as we got off the boat was great because they all learned really quick. Afterwards, David Coffin had a couple of us racing up a stair flight at the Fort to touch a wall but I don't quite remember who was the first person that went. All that I can remember was being the winner and making it up the stairs and touching the wall in 2 seconds beating Sedny as she was leading with 3 seconds. I was shocked because I did not know I would have made it up the stair flight in 2 seconds. The whole day out on Georges on Wednesday was really fun.

Save the Harbor / Save the Bay Summer Staff Orientation 2016

Thursday was another fun day at Carson beach (one of my favorite sites after All Access Boston Harbor). Kayaking with a group of some of the old and new Junior Program Assistants was great and probably the best part of my day at Carson that day. There was about 5 kayaks racing and once we were further out, we all tied our kayaks together and most of us jumped into the water. The water was so cold but once I was in, it felt so good because it was really hot out that day. Overall, orientation was a great way to start off the summer. I can't wait to be back out on the Harbor exploring and serving all of these kids and teaching them new things. 

Until next time,

- Andrea Lopes :)

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