The Coastal Fund (CF) shall provide funds to preserve, protect, and enhance the terrestrial and marine habitats associated with the shoreline of the University of California, Santa Barbara through preservation, education, open access, research, and restoration.
The following five principles shall guide and govern the funding of projects by the Coastal Fund:
- PRESERVATION: Biodiversity and the ecological integrity of the shoreline are essential and irreplaceable. The CF is committed to preserving and enhancing these aspects of the shoreline.
- EDUCATION: Environmental education is vital to the future health and well being of the UCSB community. The CF seeks to develop and utilize educational materials and opportunities that are fun, factual, proactive, and informative.
- ACCESS: The right to safe open and low impact access to the shoreline must be maintained with respect to sensitive habitat. CF supports the balance of Environmentally Sensitive Habitat Areas (ESHA) and public access.
- RESEARCH: Projects that promote education through research are fundamental to our understanding of coastal resources and the natural processes and human influences that act upon them. CF encourages studies that further our understanding of the shoreline.
- RESTORATION: Understanding that past human activity has negatively affected the environment, CF understands that restoration of habitat is critical to maintain natural and healthy ecosystems.
WHAT IS THE COASTAL FUND?
The Coastal Fund (CF) is a student initiative dedicated to the conservation of the UCSB coastline. Our student body recognizes that the coast is at the heart of our campus’ culture and character and must be protected. In response, each undergraduate student contributes $5.25 per quarter, and each graduate student $3.00 per quarter, into a fund that provides over $350,000 each year to protect and enhance our coastline. Since Fall of 1999, the Fund has allocated over $3 million to countless local projects or programs.
The Coastal Fund accepts proposals during three funding cycles throughout the year (one per academic quarter) and critically reviews them for consistency to the CF Mission Statement vision and principals, relevance to the student community, adherence to UCSB and Regental policy and benefit to the UCSB shoreline. Applicants present their proposals at regular meetings which gives Board Members opportunities to ask specific questions to each applicant and learn about the project in detail. The proposals are denied, funded entirely or modified as needed.
The Fund creates an excellent opportunity for students and the UCSB and Santa Barbara communities to become actively involved in the protection of their local coastal environment. Funds may be requested for projects that advance the Coastal Fund’s mission such as undergraduate and graduate marine research, community and campus programs or coastal education.
To further involve students the Coastal Fund has established the Coastal Service Program, which offers student organizations an opportunity to raise funds by participating in a local beach clean up or native habitat restoration. The program enables all student organizations to gain much needed funding for their programs while contributing to keep our community clean and healthy.
The Coastal Fund is a shining example of a grassroots community-based effort to care for the coast and can be used as a model for other campuses. Funds are generated and administered by the students, who ultimately will be one of the largest beneficiaries of a healthy coast.