Thursday, June 29, 2017

Vertex Interns Get South Boston Ready for Summer

On Friday, June 23, eighty Summer Interns from Vertex Pharmaceuticals joined Save the Harbor/Save the Bay and the Department of Conservation and Recreation in South Boston to spend the afternoon getting Carson Beach ready for the summer. Though Carson Beach has become the cleanest urban beach in the country, thanks to the $5 billion investment in the Harbor Cleanup, it takes an ongoing effort to keep it that way. Thanks to the enthusiasm and dedication of our great friends and neighbors at Vertex, this job becomes much easier.

The Vertex Team sang a rousing sea shanty before diving into work
The 80 volunteers were just beginning a summer as interns in departments across Vertex's organization, and were excited to spend a beautiful day outside getting to know their new neighborhood and putting in time to beautify the beach.

Though it's already June, the lingering effects of winter and the stormy spring left plenty of work to be done. Breaking into teams, the volunteers criss-crossed the beach, boardwalk and parkland, transforming the landscape as the went. The winter wreaks havoc on the sandscape of these beaches, and there is a lot to be done just moving sand back where it is meant to be. Teams traversed the beach and cleared ADA ramps, moved sand back onto the beach from the boardwalk and sidewalk, and cleared out the seawall.

The wet weather also transformed parts of the beach, particularly under the boardwalk, into mini-rainforests. To prevent many non-native species from overrunning the beach, the volunteers worked to cut and pull brush from around the area, and pack it for disposal by the DCR.

The find of the day, an old muffler unearthed from the tall grasses along the beach.
Finally, with the stormy weather, Carson Beach needed a lot of attention and care as trash and debris continually wash up on shore, and algae gathers at the tide lines. This effort included the removal of over 2 truckloads of trash from around the area, including some sifting and filtering through the sand to locate "hidden treasures". 

"In just 4 hours, this hardworking team of young people accomplished probably a week's worth of work," said Chris Mancini, Save the Harbor's Vice President of Operations & Programs. "We are really lucky to have such a great partnership with the DCR and Vertex that can contribute so directly to our public beaches, which we rely on to deliver first rate program to the youth and students in the neighborhood."

As Jack Kelly from the Department of Conservation and Recreation put it, "When can you all come back?"

No comments: