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BYOB, help RON

Attention, shoppers: Bring your own bag to Whole Foods

CSU Monterey Bay’s Return of the Natives program is getting some help from Whole Foods shoppers.

From July through September, shoppers at the grocery chain’s Monterey store can request that the five-cent refund they receive from bringing their own bags be directed to RON.

The donation will be used to help pay for school buses to transport children to RON events, and to support student assistants “who are invaluable to helping RON meet our mission,” said RON director Laura Lee Lienk.

The Return of the Natives restoration project is the education and outreach branch of the Watershed Institute at CSUMB. RON's environmental goal is to protect the waters of the Monterey Bay through restoration of the waterways and the lands draining into the bay. RON's social goal is to bring people and nature together. RON works with more than 4,000 school children and 1,200 community volunteers each year. They work in wildland settings such as the dunes in Marina, the Fort Ord National Monument and creeks in Salinas. Other volunteers and students work at the campus greenhouse, where they propagate 25,000 native plants annually for partners including the Monterey Peninsula Regional Park District, the state Parks Department, Fort Ord National Monument/Bureau of Land Management, the city of Seaside and local schools. RON will celebrate its 20th anniversary in the fall. It was founded by classroom teachers who believed that children learn best when they are outside and active. Learn more about RON Follow Return of the Natives on Facebook

Photo courtesy of Return of the Natives RON at work: Local school children help to restore Bureau of Land Management property