In Partnership with the Southern Weekend

Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii shares its mission to keep island beaches clean with Aqua-Aston Hospitality

Sponsored by Aqua-Aston Hospitality

With a 70 year legacy in Hawaii, Aqua-Aston Hospitality is raising awareness about the importance of responsible tourism through its #ShareTheAloha campaign and the small acts of aloha everyone can do to help protect and preserve Hawaii. The hotel giant has partnered with many organizations across the state to support this mission, including Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii. HI Now host sat down with Theresa van Greunen from Aqua-Aston and Rafael Bergstrom from Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to talk about what the local non-profit is doing for the community as environmental stewards.

Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii has been on a mission to keep Hawaii beaches clean since 2010 and is the leading beach cleanup, marine debris and plastic pollution education specialist in the state. It hopes to inspire local communities to care for their coastlines and are leading the way to protect valuable resources through large-scale cleanups, education and outreach that move the community towards a more sustainable way of life.

To achieve this goal, the non-profit coordinates large scale coastal cleanups, educational programs, public awareness campaigns, engages decision makers, and facilitates other interested groups to run their own cleanups. Since its inception, the organization has brought together 21,688 volunteers to remove 349,738 pounds of debris from Hawaii’s coastlines and educated over 26,000 students about plastic pollution and coastal stewardship.

Bergstrom says cleanups can only do so much. Now, the non-profit utilizes its popular large-scale cleanups to inspire better consumer behaviors and continued coastal stewardship through cleanups, education, and social media.

There are a number of ways to get involved with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii. On Oahu, it hosts four large-scale cleanups annually, one on each side of the island. Its next cleanup is on Earth Day, April 21, at Waimanalo Beach. Last year’s Earth Day cleanup was the largest to date with 1,548 volunteers who cleaned up four miles of coastline and removed 7,000 pounds of trash.

Everyone can participate in the #ShareTheAloha campaign by bestowing random acts of aloha to others in your life and by making positive choices that help protect the environment. For example, we can all #ShareTheAloha by volunteering, cleaning up the beach, saying no to single use plastic, or choosing reef-safe sunscreen. You can also support local businesses, or just be kind to one another.

Aqua-Aston is making it easy to get started and #ShareTheAloha with its special A-List package, which includes an eco-friendly celebration gift. The gift includes a handmade Jana Lam bag, a tin of reef-safe sunscreen, and a stainless steel straw complete with a cleaning brush. Guests who book the package will also receive a 15% discount on rooms and a free upgrade.

If you have your own aloha experience, share it by tagging #ShareTheAloha. If you know someone who lives aloha, you can also share their story and they could win an Orlando trip for two on Alaska Airlines and five nights accommodations at an Aqua-Aston Hospitality resort in Orlando.

Hawaii News Now is also giving away more prizes: http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/sharethealoha/

For more information: Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter: @aquaaston, aquaaston.com/share-the-aloha, hawaiinewsnow.com/sharethealoha/, sustainablecoastlineshawaii.org/, @sustainablecoastlineshawaii