The African American Environmentalist Association (AAEA) established a partnership with the Greater Union Baptist Church (GUBC) to operate an environmental tour called the “Compton To Catalina Program,” which takes students and other young people from Compton, California to Catalina Island. AAEA and the California Center for Economic Initiatives (CCFEI) are also partnering under the Compton To Catalina Program to expose Compton youth to boat repair and to provide technical training services.
AAEA initiated its Compton-To-Catalina Program on Saturday, April 21, 2012, which is the day before Earth Day. The program began with a press conference at the Greater Union Baptist Church in Compton, California. Participants then traveled to Long Beach, California to board the Catalina Express to make the one hour trip to the island. Once on Santa Catalina Island, the participants boarded the Emerald submersible to observe underwater life around the island. Finally, participants toured Southern California Edison's electricity generating plant at Pebbly Beach, the island's primary electricity generation source.
The Compton To Catalina Program is being operated thanks to a grant from Southern California Edison.
GUBC recruits people to participate in the Compton To Catalina (CTC) Program. AAEA makes arrangements for the tours and facilitates educational experiences for the students. Each is a daylong affair that includes transportation to Long Beach, where the tours originate. Participants have escorts at all times and activities on the island are arranged to maximize the environmental experience.
We utilize the transport services of Catalina Express. Passengers on board Catalina Express can expect to arrive in Catalina in about an hour from Long Beach. The Catalina Express fleet consists of eight high-speed vessels including four catamarans. The largest vessel in operation, the Catalina Jet has the capacity to carry nearly 500 passengers across the channel. Catalina Express offers up to 30 round trips daily
There are numerous activities available on Catalina Island, including: an Eco Tour Zip Line, hiking, biking, camping, swimming, snorkeling, diving, sightseeing, dining, shopping or relaxing, to name a few. Our main activities include a submersible ride to view submerged vegetation and fish species and an electricity power plant tour.
AAEA, GUBC and CCFEI are providing important environmental and technical services to the youth of Compton, California. This partnership provides a rich environmental experience for participants. AAEA will engage institutions and individuals to support the program.