On April 2, 2011, the IES Club members made a trip to Madrona Marsh in Torrance to volunteer for the morning. Volunteers included IES members, students from high schools and colleges, and even other club members. After everyone signed in, the day started off with sorting recyclables into four different categories: aluminum, plastic, glass, and cardboard material. After the “sorting”, volunteer manager, Ron, took 20 volunteers to go plant, while another manager took the rest of the volunteers to go weeding. As all workers stepped inside the gated marsh, they were told about why they had to weed and plant. The event managers explained to us that the weeds and grass around major plants would absorb or “steal” their water nutrients. While the group weeding consisted of over 40 people, another group was made within the weeding group to transfer newly grown plants into different flower pots to make future planting simpler.
After putting much effort into the marsh for about 90 minutes, it was break time. Lemonade and cookies were handed out to each of the members and everyone rested for about 15 minutes, until they got back to work. With about one hour left, everyone got back to weeding in a different area of the marsh that had located about 30 different major plants that inhabited native animals. After the weeding was done, a member of the Madrona Marsh group, Ryan, took the volunteers to a scenic spot on the marsh to talk about how volunteering is useful and how it can help regular-day students or people get jobs and move far and forward in life. “The day ended with a feeling that can’t be felt without volunteering. Words can’t describe the emotions felt after helping wildlife and nature. Now animals and plants can live “that” much better because of us,” said IES member Min Hong. Despite waking up early and getting dirty, volunteering at the marsh benefited everyone and everything in the end.
Written by: Jason Choi