Community Organizations Collaborate On PLNU’s Sunset Cliffs Clean Up  

Volunteers help clean the coast. Photos courtesy of Julia Ausland.

Point Loma Nazarene University students and volunteers gathered at Sunset Cliffs to help with a coastal cleanup on Sept. 23. PLNU partnered with The Point Loma Association and I Love A Clean San Diego to host the event.

The Point Loma Association is a nonprofit organization whose main mission is to improve the Peninsula community.    

“In 1961, about 20 locals met in a back room of  The Quarter Deck restaurant and decided on a common goal: to make Point Loma beautiful,” said Cecilia Carrick, the co-chair of the beautification committee. “The group originally focused on taking down ugly billboards along Rosecrans Street – known back then as Billboard Alley – and planting hundreds of jacaranda trees. But then came involvement in City/County and Military affairs that impacted our Peninsula, undergrounding of utility poles, planting of medians, replacing ugly bus benches with decorative wrought iron benches, picking up litter and ablating graffiti.” 

The Point Loma Association actually has had long, close ties with PLNU and its students.   

“In 1994, a retired Navy submariner, Hugh Story, coordinated with Point Loma Nazarene University students to help plant palm trees around the 1.3-acre median in front of the Barnes Tennis Center and Dusty Rhodes Park.  Soon after, the Mean Green Team (MGT) was born.  In fact, originally, the MGT name was used by the original PLNU students who volunteered,  but when that group dissolved, the Point Loma Association carried on with the name,” said Carrick.

I Love San Diego holds similar goals and has impacted San Diego mainly through community clean ups. The organization was founded in 1954 under a different name, War against Litter Committee, but changed its name in 1980 and has been helping San Diego for over 67 years.      

Both organizations work toward bettering San Diego through numerous facets, whether it be through community cleanups, environmental education, beautification programs, planting trees, removing graffiti and more. 

Although many big organizations are supporting PLNU’s environmental projects, such as the recent cliffs cleanup, many smaller student-run clubs are as well, one of the Clubs being SEAA: Students for Environmental Action & Awareness. 

In support of the cliffs clean up, SEAA club members were notified and urged to attend the clean up.

“It was a great experience, I’m really happy I decided to go and have a chance to help out my community by keeping our coasts clean,” said Elena Bunney, a third-year student majoring in organizational communication. “Being environmentally conscious has always been a big passion of mine, in highschool I was the vice president of our green team club. So joining Point Loma’s SEAA club seemed like the perfect opportunity to continue helping to keep our earth and beaches clean.”     

 S.E.A.A. Club has their own page via Linktree that is filled with resources such as email list sign-ups, resources for environmental awareness, and sign-ups for current events the club is partaking in. 

The cleanup was an easy walk for PLNU students and easy to locate being held at the Landera Street parking lot. Supplies to help pick up trash like gloves and bags were handed out as well and snacks, water and coffee were readily available. Joining the clean-up was also very simple; you just had to show up ready to help out.     

PLNU’s coastal cleanup was a success bringing in not only students but many other volunteers to help pick up trash plaguing sunset cliffs.