WATSONVILLE— Boating, fishing, and sailing retailer West Marine has awarded more than $100,000 in grants during the 2020-2021 grant cycle to 64 community-based nonprofits across the country through its BlueFuture program.
Among them were several in Southern California including South Bayfront Sailing Association in Chula Vista, Oceanside Yacht Club Youth Foundation, Dana West Youth Sailing, San Diego Imperial Council Boy Scouts of America, and Clear Blue Sea.
BlueFuture was created by West Marine six years ago to support and encourage nonprofit organizations dedicated to getting young people out on and around the water in recreational and educational capacities.
Throughout the month of December, customers were able to make donations both online and in-person at all West Marine stores to benefit the BlueFuture grants program. Each of the top 10 fundraising stores were given the opportunity to choose a local nonprofit in their community to receive a BlueFuture grant. Stores in San Diego and Newport Beach were among this year’s top 10 stores and their selected organizations were Oceanside Yacht Club Youth Foundation and the San Diego-Imperial Council Boy Scouts.
“These grants would not be possible without our customers and their donations to BlueFuture. In a year filled with uncertainty, we were able to raise the money for our largest grant cycle to date. West Marine truly has the best customers and their generosity and commitment to getting the next generation out on the water inspires us,” said Ken Seipel, CEO of West Marine, in a March 23 released statement. “With so many youth-focused nonprofits losing funding in 2020, we are proud to continue our BlueFuture grants and support these organizations who connect future generations to the water through recreation and education initiatives.”