For a while now the East Boston Harborkeepers, a group founded in 2016 to promote climate resiliency and foster environmental stewardship along the neighborhood’s shoreline, have been an unofficial partner of the U.S. Coast Guard, Sector Boston.
Harborkeepers have been the Coast Guard’s Weather-Ready Ambassador providing up to date information on weather events to Eastie residents and the risks involved with these events.
“The Coast Guard has partnered with Harborkeepers prior to last year’s Nor’Easters, providing critical maritime messaging and allowing the Coast Guard in Boston to assess pre and post storm situations and provide relief were it was needed these,” said the Coast Guard’s Lt. Brandon Atent. “These types of partnerships are truly invaluable and critical during these times.”
Haborkeepers and the Coast Guard have also teamed up for community-wide events like last summer’s Environmental and Maritime Festival as well as educational programs like the Harborkeepers Climate and Nature Program at the Donald McKay School that teaches students about their coastal environment.
Last Thursday at the Coast Guard Station in Boston the Harborkeepers and the Coast Guard made the partnership official with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).
The purpose of this MOU is to formalize a partnership that will help facilitate coordination and leverage efforts of communication, transparency and awareness for marine environmental response and community preparedness that will help improve overall coastal resiliency in Boston.
Coast Guard Captain of the Port of Boston, Eric Doucette, whose family grew up in Eastie, said that he has witnessed first hand the amazing work Harborkeepers has been doing in the community.
“The fact we can rely on Harborkeepers to help us connect with the local community in invaluable,” said Doucette. “Their stewardship on coastal resiliency, environmental education and stewardship is tremendous and we have enjoyed a great partnership.”
Harborkeepers Founder, Magdalena Ayed said the signing of the MOU was very special because it was a testament to the work the Harborkeepers is doing in the community.
“We live our mission,” said Ayed. “We are out there every day to improve our community, improve the coastal resources and improve environmental education here. So for us to add another layer of coordination (with the Coast Guard) is going to help us achieve our long term goals. This partnership really exemplifies what we can do. It’s about trust building. It’s about partnership building. It’s about education. For us, it’s really about creating more communication and what we can do together on a day to day basis. The Coast Guard has been so welcoming and so open to our mission. I’m really proud to be here to represent and organization that does a lot of good work to create this link between us and the Coast Guard. We hope that this model is something that can be replicated in other communities.”
The Harborkeepers, the U.S. Coast Guard and the East Boston community celebrate the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Coast Guard and the Harborkeepers to officially mark the partnership between the two.
Coast Guard Captain of the Port of Boston Eric Doucette, Harborkeepers Founder Magdalena Ayed and Rep. Adrian Madaro talk during the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signing.
Coast Guard Captain of the Port of Boston Eric Doucette and Harborkeepers Founder Magdalena Ayed sign the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The purpose of this MOU is to formalize a partnership that will help facilitate coordination and leverage efforts of communication, transparency and awareness for marine environmental response and community preparedness that will help improve overall coastal resiliency in Boston.
Coast Guard Captain of the Port of Boston Eric Doucette talks about the partnership between the Coast Guard and the Harborkeepers.