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2017 Annual Appeal

November 17, 2017

Dear Friends and Supporters,

It is with great humility and appreciation that we write to ask you to support the work of Billion Oyster Project. What was our crazy idea seven years ago has grown into the region’s leading marine restoration and educational initiative. We launched BOP in the spring of 2014 with two full time employees. We are now a staff of 28 incredibly passionate and hardworking professionals dedicated to improving the condition of our local ecosystem and outcomes for public school students. We have restored 25 million oysters to New York Harbor, impacted  the lives of 5,000 students at 100 schools, and diverted over 750,000 pounds of shell from restaurant waste streams to use as oyster growing substrate. None of this would be possible without the support of people like you. Through this annual appeal, we hope to raise critical funds that will support all of our programs in the coming year.

Billion Oyster Project is our solution to two complex challenges: a degraded natural environment and a lack of access to well-paying, in-demand careers in marine fields for public school students. We believe that school is more engaging and exciting when learning happens by doing and students are empowered to play a meaningful role in a large-scale ecosystem restoration project. Similarly, our natural environment and the ecosystems where we live cannot thrive without the care and stewardship of young people from diverse backgrounds.

Through Billion Oyster Project, we support students at the Urban Assembly New York Harbor School and their efforts to grow and restore oysters through their Career and Technical Education classes. These students learn to grow oysters, scuba dive, operate vessels, conduct research and design and build reef infrastructure in an incredibly demanding environment. Harbor School is our home, our inspiration and our most dedicated and important partner. Our staff is integrated with Harbor School staff and works directly with Harbor School students.

With your support, we plan to continue to expand this effort, engage more schools, restore more oysters and gradually get closer to our goal of engaging one million public school students in the restoration of one billion oysters. We need your support to make this happen. Please consider making a donation to our annual appeal to help with this ambitious effort. With your help we can restore New York Harbor and create a model that is replicable anywhere humans live on or near a degraded natural system.

Sincerely,

Pete Malinowski, Executive Director

Murray Fisher, Board Chair