The Roundhouse Aquarium is the recipient of a donation of $10,000 from the S. Mark Taper Foundation. The funds will help continue to expand important free educational programs and improve some the aquarium’s aging equipment.
Founded in 1989 the S. Mark Taper Foundation is dedicated to enhancing the quality of people’s lives by supporting non-profit organizations and their work in our communities.
The aquarium, located at the end of the Manhattan Beach pier, plans on using some of the funds to improve the volunteer program and increase the training volunteers receive. “Many volunteers are very dedicated to the aquarium and serve for several years. We want these volunteers to continue to learn while they are at the Roundhouse,” points out Volunteer Coordinator Brittney Olaes. Funding received from the S. Mark Taper Foundation will go towards advanced training for these special volunteers, allowing them to learn and grow.
Quincy, a high school volunteer, is one of many who has profited from the aquarium volunteer program. “Ever since I was a kid I’ve liked animals. I thought animals were cool and I thought the ocean was pretty vast and pretty spectacular and I wanted to learn more about it. I became a Roundhouse volunteer because I wanted to learn about different marine animals and I wanted to figure out if I wanted to become a Marine Biologist. When I apply for college, I figured volunteering at an Aquarium like this would help me figure it out and learn more about it. Which it did! I plan on majoring in Marine Biology.”
The S. Mark Taper Foundation grant will also be used to create new educational displays for members of the general public who visit the aquarium on the weekends and late afternoons and evenings. These visitors enjoy coming back many times over. The money will also help replace aging equipment and enable collection trips to add new animals.
“This donation will help us continue providing the community with a free hands-on experience that enhances our city and helps educate the regional population,” notes Educational Director Eric Martin. “We know the community will be just as grateful as we are for the support the S. Mark Taper Foundation is giving the Roundhouse Aquarium.”