January 7, 2007

Dear friends of ExploraMar,

As ExploraMar students, we have shared many amazing and memorable experiences on the Sea of Cortez. One special memory was visiting the small town of Nopolo. We, Jessica Arvidson, Halie Kampman, Heather Funkhouser and Claire Ellis, are writing on behalf of the family at Nopolo.

In October, 2003, a powerful hurricane ripped through the area and wrecked havoc on the village of Nopolo. They lost many of their belongings, and their only fishing boat and motor were destroyed, their only means of support. The children were sent away to live with relatives in different villages because it was unsafe for them to play around the rubble. The roof of their small shack was ripped off, and a hole-ridden weathered blue tarp has taken its place. Their cookhouse was completely torn apart and no longer exists. Because they are miles away from anywhere, resources to fix things are hard to come by.

After visiting in the summer of 2004 with ExploraMar, and finding the damage still unrepaired, we were inspired to start the Nopolo Club at our high school to raise money for the family. We are all alumni of Tamalpais High School in Mill Valley, California. With the Nopolo club at Tam High, we held monthly meetings and organized fundraisers. We have decided to keep our club going this summer in order to increase our funds. In September, we are taking a trip down to La Paz to buy them goods (which are pre-approved expenditures such as flour, water, vegetables, tools, building materials, etc.) and deliver them.

We would greatly appreciate any donations to our cause. Even as little as ten dollars would be helpful. If you are able to contribute, please send a check made out to ExploraMar in the enclosed envelope. If you have any additional questions please email Heather Funkhouser.

Thank you for your time,
Muchas gracias!
Heather Funkhouser, Jessica Arvidson, Halie Kampman, and Claire Ellis





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