Fourteen years ago a small group of 7th and 8th grade Adams School Students and their teacher, Bill McWeeny, formed The CALVIN Project for the purpose of educating people about the world’s most endangered large whale, the North Atlantic right whale. These whales live in Maine and New England waters much of the year but are rarely seen. There are currently about 430 right whales left, and no calves were born in 2018 for the first time since record keeping! The situation is critical.
Each year, the 7th and 8th graders at this unique school, located in Castine, Maine, research the right whale problem to understand the situation. They do this in the classroom using the book, The Urban Whale, as well as current websites like the Right Whale Catalog. The Calvineers also go on three major field trips each year.
The Calvineers have presented their work at three international meetings of The Society for Marine Mammology (Quebec City, 2009; Tampa, 2013 and Halifax, 2017). Scientists at these meetings are inspired by the knowledge and enthusiasm that the Calvineers have.
The Calvineers have set a goal of raising $48,000 to attend the 2nd World Conference on Marine Mammal Science in Barcelona, 2019. They have raised more than $20,000 to date from lemonade stands, spaghetti dinners, silent auctions and the like. They have also received one grant so far from The Island Foundation. The Calvineers have more events planned and grants applied for. They will still be about $10,000 short of their goal by the time reservations have to be made for the trip. (October 2019)
At the World Conference the Calvineers will help kick off The Year of the Right Whale, 2020. This event is being run by the Blue Ocean Society and has asked the Calvineers to be part of the celebratory events of 2020 for right whales.
These great kids are a tribute to what hard work and dedication is all about. They have already worked so hard to raise money and would be so appreciative of additional assistance to get them to Barcelona and kick off the new chapter in saving the beautiful and endangered right whale.