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Twelfth grader Teddy Papa and alumnus Frank Major founded the bodysurfing club here at LBHS. Now they are looking to take it a step further and protect the oceans they enjoy. The club is planning on making donations to organizations that help educate people on sharks and help prevent shark finning. Every year humans slaughter millions of sharks by cutting their fins off to make shark fin soup. Shark fin soup has little taste but still is popular in parts of Asia.
“I was inspired to donate towards anti-shark finning programs because it’s been an issue that I have always cared about. We recently watched a documentary in Marine Ecology, and I talked with Ms. Holtz about how I could get involved and help. She was a great help in finding a good organization to donate to,” said Papa.
Papa has lived in Laguna Beach all his life and has always been passionate about the ocean. The health of the ocean’s ecosystems are in decline. With the decline in shark population, the food chain and balance of the ocean will be in danger.
“As of now, the club plans on donating towards a non-profit organization called Shepherd Conservation Society. I like this organization in particular because they actually go out and make a difference in the shark-finning world. They also work towards protecting other marine animals like dolphins and turtles. There are a lot of rules and regulations imposed on shark finning and illegal fishing practices, but the issue is that there is very little enforcement. Sea Shepherd puts words into action and goes out to fight and stop those who are committing crimes towards marine life,” said Papa.
The club has raised money by selling customized T shirts and looks to use this money to make a difference in the health of our oceans.